“The female gaze to me is not about pleasure or even power; it is about presence. The female gaze is about women storytellers planting their feet down and shouting with a camera: I AM HERE. I AM PRESENT. I MATTER. The female gaze derives from the desire to tell stories—no matter who they are about—and to share thoughts and feelings and experiences. The female gaze reminds us that storytelling is universal and that the male perspective is not the only or default perspective.”—Melissa Silverstein, “Embracing the Female Gaze”
Studies have shown that women are more collaborative than men. “Punching Out the Patriarchy” explores the ways in which collaborative culture can empower women in male-dominated spaces, specifically women in boxing. This project features She Fights, a non-profit that teaches boxing to teenage girls of color in New York City.
My colloquium, titled “The Girl Gaze Project: Subverting Patriarchal Structures Through Photos of and by Women,” was inspired by the #girlgaze movement on social media–a multimedia project designed to showcase the work of young female photographers. Representations of women and girls are shaped by a system that has fostered a visual narrative that both excludes and stereotypes. My work aims to offer more inclusive and diverse representations of the female experience and girlhood.