Mayday Redux

In our current environment of turmoil and protest, it is worth acknowledging those who came before. This exhibit at the RISD Museum features color screenprints on paper by local women working collaboratively, circa 1971. From the wall text:

These activist posters were created by a group of artists in support of abortion rights and the anti-war movement. Using simple materials like torn paper and glue resist, the artists designed vivid and memorable images. The posters’ slogans draw from a range of sources, including psychedelic rock lyrics, Third World revolutionary slogans, and (perhaps irresponsibly) Native American cosmology. These works were probably posted around Providence; their frayed edges and stained surfaces point to a history of use. Works like these remind students and workers alike that no matter the crisis face, we inherit a living tradition of of progressive struggle.

In other words, plus ça change . . . how depressing.

Poster artists credited: Marcia Ancier, Nancy Cheser (RISD BFA ’72), Jamie Horwitz, Mary Patten, Judith Rothchild (RISD BFA ’72), and Ellen Tranes.

The posters were a gift of Ms. Cheser in 2003. The rock lyrics referenced above were from the album “Blows Against the Empire” by Jefferson Starship.

RISD Museum, 20 North Main Street, (directions)

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