“Femaissance provides this beacon of light to everyone out there doing the hard work to shift tides. It emboldens me to be more vocal and face battles because I know this community is there to support me, even when it’s hard to have a powerful grasp on what is going on in the world with such darkness. Femaissance is in many ways a lighthouse of its own, and it's a beautiful thing to see it coming to fruition in such a historical space.”
♀Danielle Hein, New Orleans-based artist and Proserpina participant
Control. Autonomy. Inclusivity. Light.
Proserpina is a safe space for womxn who have been dragged into the underworld against our will. A refuge for those who have felt buried alive by the weight of the patriarchy. A community for the victims of all kinds of toxic darkness—from the assaulted and harassed, to the depressed and sick, from the unpaid and undervalued, to the silenced and shamed.
We started planning this show in March as our response to #MeToo, using Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s 17th Century “The Rape of Proserpina” as an art historical prompt for exploring the seedy underbelly of the issues that still haunt us to this day. Today, it is our most ambitious exhibition to date, with 50+ womxn participants and 25 days of programming. At this present moment— watching Dr. Christine Blasey Ford bravely detail her truth as victim and its simultaneous support and inconceivable opposition—we are reminded more than ever how badly we need this.
The Lighthouse on Camp is our emblem of independence, only possible through your support, and our self-assurance garnered from experiencing firsthand the power thoughtful utilization of space has to bring womxn together and pull us from our personal corners of darkness. It is worth nothing our venue was initially constructed as the Lighthouse for the Blind.
“Bravery is contagious.” - Diane Feinstein.
Femaissance seeks to inspire bravery. We aim to build a community that fosters “infectious courageousness,” encouraging womxn to speak up and heal. To create environments that bridge gaps, generate womxn makers money, allow womxn to form valuable connections and friendships, and experience tangible community in the age of Instagram. We hope for patrons to experience the satisfaction derived from supporting a womxn’s passion.
Femaissance was born out of a bleak socio-political climate defined by the opposing forces of hatred and hope. In our tribulations and triumphs, we have come to understand that our poignant source of light is the energy generated from emerging out of darkness with force. We know this from your shared truths.
Thank you. And welcome home to the Lighthouse.