HERE ARE MORE EMAILS WE'VE RECEIVED
Date: Sun, 9 Dec 2001
Subject: cheers to the GG's Great website, 2 hours passed in what seemed like 2 mins.
Thought you might find it interesting to know that a VERY large wave of resentment and skepticism is growing here in Europe in regards to museum practices (i.e. collectors being on boards of trustees,etc.) I speak from the experience that I have gained so far from working on my MA in art gallery and museum studies. The corporate/capitalist paradigm of the modern museum which has taken the art world as its hostage is a dying animal! (not a gorrilla..) And I believe that it is your positive, thought provoking actions that are making this possible. Big Ups to the G-girls!
Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2001
Subject: Art World Hypocrisy Props to the Guerrilla Girls! Grrrrrrrrr!
I just wanted you all to know that I love what you do...I'm an artist in Washington state finishing my degree at the Evergreen State College. I am a woman artist of color and have found it difficult to explain the hypocrisy of the art world to my family and friends. I have also found it difficult to get gals I think are incredibly talented interested in trying to express themselves through one kind of creative process or another. So I've given them your books and sent them to your website and they LOVE IT! My friends are getting all riled up to take a stand and represent in the ART WORLD! Thanks for helpin' me keep the fire burning in our guts to create...I also wanted to know... to all the other artists in my 'hood... If you read this, lets get in touch, let's not poo poo each others work. Maybe we could...support each other...???
Date: Thu, 06 Dec 2001
Subject: Discrimination in Animation
I just read that bit in "Hot Flashes" about cereal characters being all male. Which of course got me to thinking about the industry I'm in- animation. Traditionally, women have NOT been animators, and in fact, Walt Disney flat out refused to have women animators in his studio, which at the time was pretty typical and common. Women were relegated to tracing the drawings onto cels, and painting them. Ironically, the discrimination in the animation industry was pretty rampant as of ten years ago- I went to school to learn this trade, and there were all of six women in the department. When they bussed us animation students onto the Disney lot to see "The Little Mermaid" in 1989, one older guy there snickered to his buddy, "Oh, look. They've brought their ink and paint department!" However, one of the women I went to school with became one of the best story development gurus in the business, and went on to help develop the stories for Toy Story 2 and Monsters Inc. The reason I wanted to write in was just to say that in the history of the animated short, here in America especially, female characters have ALWAYS been relegated to just being the sexual interest of the main characters. Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Mickey Mouse... Sure they had their girlfriends, but that's all those females were. Even Olive Oyl was mainly a trophey the two main characters fought over. In the feature animated films, females have typically been the reactive type, waiting for the guy to come along and make everything better. Recently, there have been stabs made at trying to have strong women characters, but even they fall flat. Which of course brings me to the point about the cereal characters. [GG note: see letter from 10/18/00. below] Since they were mainly created in the fifties, the "golden age of animation," and the guys that created them were mainly of Disney's ilk (biased, sexist and slightly misogynistic), it's not surprising that male characters dominate the cereal market. Keep up the great work.
Date: Tue, 27 Nov 2001
Subject: Feminist Survey
Dear All at Guerrilla Girls, I discovered your site while working on a presentation about feminist art in this wonderful class I take called Art and Culture. I read about your ideas and they sound amazing! I wanted to see, "how bad it was," so we (the group of grrrls who were working with me on the project and I) decided to take a survey. We go to a middle class suburban high school and figured there wouldn't be much discrimination to be found there. We went around to random guys who attend our school and asked how they felt about the feminist movement. Mostly, we received odd looks and confused gestures. It turns out most of the guys who we talked to (and some of the girls, too) didn't have any idea about what feminism really is. To quote one terribly misguided boy, "[Feminists] waste time with dumb stuff like gender neutral pronouns, which results in bad grammar rather than equality. . .It's such a crackhead movement, like a bunch of women came together and decided they didn't have enough to complain about and so they thought up feminism." I was so upset to hear such ignorance from people who I had previously assumed were fairly open minded. People either didn't know about discrimination or didn't care. It was absolutely disgusting! So this is where I propose a little bit of a solution. With your permission, I would like to start a high school branch of Guerrilla Girls, to further knowledge and action relating to the feminist cause. As we all know, high schoolers love to pick up a cause, something they can feel adamantly about, and act on their beliefs. Also, by educating and enlightening students, some of the ignorance can be eliminated. Please decide if you are willing to open your organization to some young blood and send me information regarding your ideas
Date: Fri Oct 5, 2001
Subject: Dogs Hello - keep up the great work!
I was watching TV and noticed a commercial for dog food - IAMS, I believe. The food is for overweight dogs and I noticed that on the first commercial they referred to the overweight dog as a "she." I suppose this caught my attention at first because I'm not certain that I ever hear dogs referred to as "shes." So, a few days later when I saw the same commercial with a different dog (oh, a male voice, by the way -- "Wouldn't you like to see your dog back at HER normal healthy weight??) I said to my partner that I thought they should refer to this dog as a "he" in all fairness. But, NO WAY - this was another overweight female dog. Pretty damned unfair -- now we're supposed to be ashamed of the weight of our female pets as well as ourselves?? Please keep doing what you're doing - I'm damn sick of this type of representation -- we're so indoctrinated that we don't have a clue....Thanks.
Hi, You are amazing!!! My name is Joanna. And I'm in art university in Sweden. Me and my friend are going to have an guide/performance at the Modern museum here in Stockholm at this exhibition Resistance where you have your poster. We are calling ourselves Undfucked pussy. I´ll talk about you and all the activity around. It´s going to be the 26 august. Maybe one of you will be around?
Kisses Joanna I want to be an Guerilla Girl too!!!
Based on your liberal, "I hate White men" agenda, I know that, as a White, conservative, Christian male, I have 4 strikes against me and because of my gender, race and beliefs, I am automatically despised by the likes of left-wing, gender and race-conscious radicals like the lesbian left for the mistakes of the past committed by White men. The left including artists such as Faith Ringgold clearly illustrates a deep-rooted hatred of White men for the mistakes of their ancestors. Her criticism of White / European men ("art of dead European men") can only be characterized as sheer hatred. Imagine if a White male was critical of women or said something like the "art of dead African men / women"? It would be a safe bet to say that some left-wing human rights body would come down hard against that. As usual, the left-wing feminazis get away with everything. The basis of your existence can be summarized in one word: vengeance. Putting down men is not a way of uplifting women. Having this attitude of "us" against "them" will not make the world a better place to live for anybody.
Why do you insist in hating White men as you do? What have we done to women in today's capitalist society of Canada and the U.S. that is so utterly horrific to be treated by the likes of you in such a way? Putting down today's White men for the mistakes of his ancestors in not the way to go about. Feminists, homosexuals and anti-racism groups keep arguing that hate has no place in our society yet, in true hypocritical fashion of trying to deceive the masses with your feel-good messages, you do just the opposite. Stop the hypocrisy and stop hating White men. Hatred has no place in our society. If you believe in this motto, then practice what you preach. It's enough that conservative White men are being screwed by a left-wing, discriminatory program known as Affirmative Action that we don't need to be hated even more by feminist radicals and other anti White men groups. If the left can be serious for once rather acting like irresponsible children, can you please divulge to us evil conservative White men what you really want from us, other than having us castrated so that we won't be having White male offsprings to pollute your society?
You can proceed in putting this letter in your "hate mail" (or "hate male") category. The right is usually right!
From: Theater Manager
To whom it may concern: I am a manager at a movie theatre in Madison, WI. I was very disappointed when I came to work yesterday to find that someone had vandalized the women's bathroom by placing and excessive amount of very large stickers all over the stalls and mirrors. These stickers had your name on them along with various facts about the film industry. Now, while I have no problem with you or anyone expressing themselves, I do have a problem with people vandalizing my theatre. Now while you might not directly encourage people to do this, one of the stickers was clearly intended to be place in a bathroom, which implies that you do on some level think that this kind of behavior is OK. I strongly disagree. I am disappointed that a group of women with so much obvious passion for informing the public of these things could not find a more positive way of doing so. In conclusion, I feel that since your group's name and website are on these stickers this shows the public that you have a lack of respect for private property. I hope in the future that you can find a better way of getting your point across.
Subject: Can I put 'em up EVERYWHERE?!
Dear Guerrilla Girls, I recently discovered your organization/cause in 'Bitch' Magazine and was immediately passionate about it and cannot wait to join in the fight for equality in the art world! Although I'm only 14, I definitely plan to be involved in the art world, whether it's writing, drawing, or playing music, when I get older, so I thought I should start trying to make it a more equal freakin place now! So, on that note, I was wondering if it would be okay if I printed and Xeroxed your printable posters, and put up everywhere, not just in theaters...but in book stores, coffee house, etc.? Thanks so much, and more power to the awesome gender they call FEMALES!
Subject: Dress for success
Dear Guerrilla Girls, I was wondering if you happen to have a Seattle Branch? I am actively seeking a new job as my female employers told me that while I am the hardest worker and the most intelligent employee they've had in a long time, I need to wear make-up and buy more expensive clothing to keep my job. I am an intern. I can not afford fancy clothing. I graduated with honors from my university. I can't imagine how make-up will improve the quality of my work. Needless to say, I have not been given the position I was promised because I refused to wear make-up (even after the Vice President graciously gave me her old, used lipstick).
From: E. Duffy
Subject: Giant Bra Ball
Hello Guerrilla Girls, I can't think of an organization better suited to help me with my problem. Here is the story, I welcome any assistance or advice any of you can offer:
In late October I responded to a news item that an infamous male artist was looking for a home for his Bra collection. I have done artwork about female body image and gender issues for years and immediately jumped at the chance to have the collection. I called him and we spoke for about an hour. During our conversation I proposed my idea, a giant Bra Ball made of the thousands of bras wrapped around each other; like a huge rubberband ball. I followed this conversation up with a formal proposal letter. I discussed my idea with the male artist at length. We met and discussed it further. He told me there were some other groups making proposals for the bras but that he liked my idea best and was probably going to give them to me. In December, I went up to his house to discuss logistics and see how many boxes of bras there were etc. After that meeting I wrote the male artist a detailed plan of what, how, and when we could transfer the bras from him to me and other information about my plans for the Bra Ball, possible exhibition sites etc. He phoned me a week later to say that not only has he decided not to give me the bras but now he's going to make my Bra Ball himself. He promised to give me "credit" for the idea but when pressed couldn't tell me exactly what that means. I sent copies of all my documentation to the reporter of that original news item and she ran a piece about our dispute in the Chronicle (titled Underwear Undercurrents): http://www.sfgate.com/cgibin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2001/01/10/DD31313.DTL I have just been informed by my attorney that the male artist has also retained counsel and is claiming that I cannot hold a copyright on the concept or sketch of a sculpture. The only way I can keep him from stealing my design is to make a full sized, permanent BraBall immediately. He has over 20,000 bras in his posession and he claims to be planning on making "his" BraBall. I need bras ASAP. I'm asking everyone I know to please send as many bras (any size,color, condition) as you can to: Emily Duffy - Fine Artist P.O. Box 1555 El Cerrito, CA 94530 People who send five or more bras will receive an original linoleum block print from my collection of Women's Icons. Please tell all your female friends/co-workers etc. about this and ask them to do the same.
Subject: Way to go, G. Gees
At my local library I took out your Confessions of the Guerrilla Girls. As you know it's great! I play in a band called Gaylord. I have not seen one T.V. show, commercial or T.V.screen in over five years. I'm a male. I'm of African and European decent. I'm all American (freedom, revolution etc.) I'm a visual and musical artist who frequently combines the two. For a long time I have been an avid agitator for change and equality.... My band Gaylord, is my vehicle and platform. Enough about me I'm sure you've got things to do. I don't want to join the G.Gee's but I guess I've been a member for a while now. I would love to play at ANY Guerrilla Girls function ANY WHERE.
I can't possibly describe the displeasure of accidently visiting your site. I was about to leave, but foolishly decided to read on. Never before, in the history of MANkind has such drivel been published in any form or manner. Such was my fury, that I almost called the police, surely such transgressions must be against the law. Men, have given women so much throughout the centuries and we still give on, such is our generous nature. However, through my quiet and yet all pervading manner and scheming, the rebellion has begun. Men everywhere are taking up the banner of freedom, lifting the chisels high, to crack the manacles of despair you have so shackled us with. Yes, that's right we are taking back what is ours, the vote, the money, and the right to free speech. You will be banished to the kennels like the curs you are, never to be freed, but to serve your true masters.
Subject: I will put stickers everywhere
I am a poet and artist from Chicago and teach literature and poetry to women. Your work inspires me, makes me want to drive to the neareat Art Musuem and protest their madness, I want to wear a mask and scream at the top of my lungs about a women's power, strength and magic. I want to take the name of the late Gwendolyn Brooks and go to the Oscars with you. I am with you in spirit, a girl in the war.
Subject: Looking for Mary
I am an art major at Graceland University, and one of my professors told me I should look you gals up, and I'm glad I did! As a woman artist, all of the schools I looked at only had men professors, and in my classes I think that women are not treated as well as the men. But the story I really wanted to tell you is I was looking for a Mary Cassatt print for my dorm room in my local mall. I went to the place where I usually find the best deals. I looked all though the impressionist prints and I could not find a one. I went up to the salesman and ask him if he had any prints of Mary's. His response shocked and surprised me. He said, " We do not stock many women artists, because they do not sell." I was mad and demanded to speak to the manager. The manager came out and I told him that women are not given the chance to sell if you do not offer their works, and that he should get past the chauvinistic pig attitude and get in the REAL world! I then left the store and have not returned, but my friend did to find a new section of women artists. I just thought you might like this story. Please keep up your message for the new generation of women artist coming into the word. Thanks!!!
Subject: My Art History Grade
Last year I had to write a report for my art history class about a popular topic in art. I, as a typical angsty teenager, chose beheadings at first. So I wandered about the local museums and did some reasearch, finally narrowing down my topic to portrayals of the biblical story of Judith and Holofernes. It seems to me that women artists have always come at this topic in a different way then men. Male portrayals most always show Judith somewhat detached from the murder (noble and detached) while all depictions done by women show Judith really getting into it (Elisabeta Sirani did one with a gleaming sword and a happy looking Judith that I just love). When I wrote the paper, I referenced your book on the history of art because I'd used some information I got out of it that dealt with Gentileschi. My teacher laughed when she read my bibliography and I got an A on the paper. So I suppose I just wanted to thank you for that book. At times I laughed, at times I thought, and, in the end, I passed art history.
Subject: Boobs in Canada
Guerrilla Girls! I love you. I first found out about you at some point in the 80's, I remember the article catching my eye because it was in a fashion mag. Women in masks? Not about clothes? Wonderful. We don't hear about you much in Canada and I wish we would. This country needs a little shaking up. You have inspired me along with a women here in the city in adding a little humor and a lot of message. There is a downtown night club owner who offers financial help to his female servers to purchase breast implants, they work them off with their minimal wages and tips. They are stuck there untill they are paid off. A local theater owner across the street has a yearly Halloween party with quite a bit of local press coverage and for her costume she stole a uniform from this bar, put one balloon in her shirt, carried a tray all night, and told every interviewer she was a waitress at this bar and she had yet to work off the left breast. Half the population in town found out about this club from her message and there is now a small but growing boycott of his club and others that he is involved in. I live in a city of rednecks. Country music and oil. I recently read an ad in the paper for a ladies night at a suburbian club: every Thursday night women are invited down for free drinks and the privilage of entering a raffle (drawn every 6 months) for breast implants. They call it BOOB NIGHT. mmmmm I need some inspiration for this one, anyone with a suggestion?
Subject: Art History
I am a woman and a fine arts major AND I don't plan on teaching unless it's at the college/university level, AND I hope to fight the good fight with you someday. I never realized that gender bias still ocurred until I took art classes. I actually had a male teacher tell our whole class that there is a "feminine" and "male" style of drawing. (In all fairness, he was referring to aggressiveness, but it was still offensive AND uncalled for and basically a missuse of terminology.) Thank you for existing.
Subject: Cereal woes
I am a college student at Truman State University and I would like to bring up an interesting male dominant product. A couple of weeks ago, I tried to think of a female childrens' cereal character. After brainstorming, I went to the store and realized that out of the 20 cereals that have some sort of character on the box, 20 of them were male. This just intrigues me, a product which shouldn't be marketed to male of female, I just can't figure out why. Anyways, such a small bump in the road to equality, and yet it seems to be so deeply rooted in our culture that we don't even realize it.
These are the characters/cereal I found, I'd be interested to know if there are anymore out there that the grocery stores here don't carry.
Honey Comb ------------ Bee Fruity/Cocco Pebbles -- Fred and Barney Golden Crisps --------- Bear Cookie Crisps---------- Dog and Police man Trix------------------- Rabbit Cinnamon Toast Crunch-- Chef Franken Berry---------- Frankenstein Count Chocula---------- Count Chocula Coco Puffs------------- The coco puffs bird Nes Quick ------------- Rabbit Honey Nut Cheerios ---- Bee Lucky Charms ---------- Leprechaun Frosted flakes -------- Tony the Tiger Honey Smacks ---------- Frog Corn Flakes ----------- Corny the Rooster Coco Krispies --------- Coco the chimp Rice Krispies --------- Snap, Crackle, & Pop King Vitamin ---------- King Vitamin
Subject: You girls just need to relax
I've got to say I've always liked feminism because I think women with strong opinions and that in-your-face attitude are very hot, but you girls just need to relax. Galleries can put whatever they want in their exhibits because they are privately owned. Furthermore, I think men should have more things special to them, women have lots of stuff that only they can do, like wear dresses and there are a lot of sports leagues that allow only women. So why don't you chicks back off a little and let men have a place that allows mostly men. Besides how do you know the best art doesn't come from men? Huh?
Subject: Feminism in Spain
Hello!!! I live in Granada, Spain, I'm a student of Gender and Feminism. I knew your work by a course in the university about Arts & Women. I think it is so nice,but I suppose that your work has been not always easy. Here, in Spain, I miss some movement of women. I mean, there are a lot of women working for our rights and so, and we are not bad about this. But there are no aggressive movement, do you understand?. All is very polite and very institutional. In politics, in work relations, and even in the art world. For example, I've print your poster "Guerrilla Girls Demand a Return to Traditional Values on Abortion...", and I've put it in my job, near my chair. Anyway, since I have put the paper, everybody (the ones that understand English) looks at me like if I was a terrorist or something like that. Well, I don't care very much (and even I think that will be nice to be a feminism terrorist in my imagination), but things in Spain about the abortion are very bad. Because the people are catholic, and even the women are very hypocritical.
Subject: To the mattresses!
Thank you. My school is getting new uniforms. The boys wear khakis and a collared shirt with brown shoes. The girls wear a plaid miniskirt, fleece shirt, knee high socks and panty-hose. A plaid miniskirt! I've never been comfortable in minis, but I am not allowed to wear the pants. This is sick. We should be able to wear it if we can't feel comfortable in the other option. This is neither philosophical nor about the arts, but I am going to fight. It's time to go to the mattresses.
Subject: Keep on reaching!
Dear GGirls, I am a college student attending SUNY Purchase College in the art and design conservatory, and recently I came across a list created by you, I believe it was why it's good to be a female artist. It soon took me back to 9th grade where I wrote a paper on the view of women by male artists, I included your work in my paper. I find it to be upsetting that women are practically seen as useless beings in the world of art, unless we are in fashion or old and retired. I hope that I will be a famous artist some day soon, and I promise to give you amazing women the recognition and respect you rightfully deserve. Our goal is within our reach! Keep on reaching!
Dear GuerrillaGirls, I was just looking through your posters and found them to be very interesting and true in most cases. The one created for the Republican Convention about women being able to wear make-up and have breast implants should also be used for the Democratic convention and just about every other convention!:) I seriously do not think there is a shortage of liberals and democrats who want the perfectly molded woman toy in their bedrooms and in their sights. Wherever you find men...
If you want to attack Republicans please remember that I am a Republican and like I said I do believe in most of what you are doing, but you are giving me a stereotype and a label that really don't suit who I am. Please make your attacks more specific and don't say that one group does one thing but ignore the fact that everyone else does, too. The poster makes a great point. I have always said it's ok to deny yourself pleasure when it comes to making your body look good, hence, "NO pain, no gain" but the same people will judge Christianity based on the fact that "you can't do anything fun". It's so hypocritical.
Thanks, and God Bless.
P.S.: "Caution: Cape does not enable user to fly."--Batman Costume warning label
Subject: I'm so glad I found you!
Dear Guerrilla Girls, I am the only woman working in the mill at Tuscaloosa Steel, a part of Corus, the third largest steel maker in the world. I am the first woman to successfully do some of the jobs. I have tried to pave a smooth road for those women coming behind me, but they don't seem to be hiring any! Women's issues are something I pay attention to. I scan ACLU, N.O.W., the ADL, and other related sites. I keep newspaper clippings of local occurences, related to gender issues. Now that I have found you, I want to learn more. I am telling my friends about you, so that they can visit you website. We are living in the conservative South, where ideas about equality seem to be as slow to catch on as they are in New York. Maybe you ought to consider coming for a visit one day.
Subject: Art School
My dearest Guerillas,
Thanks for all your books and interviews and information. I'm in my final senior year at the Willem the Kooning art academy and I've written an essay about the Suffrage-movement and drawn the line further to 'children' in the present. I'm glad you guys exist. I wish you could start something over here in Holland, or for that matter Europe. Because we really need it. This year I am one of the 2 / 3 girls in a class of 26 that won't be showing herself naked in order to graduate. It's really frustrating too, to have your work discribed by male tutors as...missing that naughty factor. GRRRRRRRRR! Lotsa luv.