Cassandra’s Legacy

This is my Master of Fine Arts thesis for Art, Space and Nature at the University of Edinburgh.

The title for my Masters thesis is inspired by the classical Greek play Agamemnon.

In Aeschylus’s tragedy Agamemnon there is a beautiful woman named Cassandra who had the misfortune of catching the eye of the sun god Apollo. He made her an offer. In exchange for the gift of prophecy, she would comply with his every desire. In the play, Cassandra agrees to the exchange, accepts the gift, and then refuses Apollo’s advances. Apollo then curses Cassandra by decreeing that her prophesies will always be accurate, but never believed. In the end her’s is a story that ends in misery, rape, and finally murder. All of this, because she changed her mind, and refused to have sex with a man.

In today’s political world women still fight for equality, still fight to be believed in matters of competency, bodily autonomy, and personal agency. Even as we gain in some arena’s there are still groups actively campaigning to strip us of our ability to control our own bodies, careers, and life choices. We live in a culture that still demands that we prove ourselves, our abilities, and our experiences in a way that most cis-gendered men do not have to.

We are told that we are hysterical when we are passionate, that we over react when we are being truthful, that we don’t have the same abilities even as we excel, that we are emotional when we feel empathy, that we were asking for it while we were just living our lives, that we are lying when we speak painful truths, that we are bitchy when we are direct.

The list goes on.

Many of these pieces will speak not just to women, but to people from all across the gender and sexuality spectrums. If these pieces speak to or for you, then allow them to be your voice regardless of pronoun. We are in this together.

I believe you.

These are the five pieces that comprise the exhibition:

Silenced
Photography Installation
How women feel when we try to speak up for ourselves.

Streetlights
Painted Wall Poem
How many women feel walking home at night.

Your Mother’s Vagina
Artist Book
The most common insult in the world is a slur against women.

Just Out For A Walk
Artist Book
There is another side to beautiful Edinburgh.

Imagining It
Artist Book
True stories of dismissals by doctors and the serious conditions that could have been prevented.

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