The Skirball Cultural Center is one of those very unique cultural institutions that strives to share thought provoking and civically minded exhibitions with the Los Angeles community. The Skirball is a mix of high brow museum and arts center, as all of their exhibits have tons of surrounding programming spanning different artforms that fit in with an exhibit. Currently, one show really exemplifies that idea while pushing viewers to get involved, as the show is something that touches everyone: Women Hold Up Half The Sky.
The show comes from the book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. The show’s goal is to share stories of women all over the world who are changing the world in their communities–and how we, here, can help them, to advance women’s rights. It’s remarkable that a show like this hasn’t been created earlier, as it seems like a topic so obvious that it has gone overlooked. Now, working with the authors of the book, the Skirball Center have created an exhibition of documentary photographs, visual arts, sound installations, and interactive opportunities to engage viewers and get them involved to stop injustices against women.
As the Skirball is known for, there are several exciting art events held in conjunction with the exhibit that cover all artforms. Last night, the Center welcomed England by Tim Crouch, a play adapted to the gallery that explores the value of things (like art, family, health, etc.). Coming up next Friday, the Center is super excited to welcome Riffat Sultana, Pakistani musician who is the first in her musical lineage to perform in the West. In December, there will be a screening of the documentary Shame about Mukhtar Mai, renowned women’s rights activist.
The best of the related events to the exhibit is a pop-up shop of handcrafted items “representing women’s cooperatives and female artisans from around the world.” The shop will be open through the end of December and features gifts and goods like baskets, bracelets, handbags, scarves, stationary, and even things for children.
Women Hold Up Half The Sky will be at the Skirball Cultural Center through mid March of next year.
Photos by Even Abramson for the Skirball Cultural Center.