Women in Focus: Realising Representation
This week we are joined by Poplar Union Arts and Community Programmer Beth Watton. Ahead of International Women’s Day 2018, we invited Beth to discuss the importance of the representation of women in arts programming and to introduce our upcoming Women in Focus Festival.
Women In Focus
In the same year that we celebrate the centenary of (certain) women getting the vote after a hard-won suffrage campaign, we are also met with breaking news of the widespread mistreatment of women, girls and trans women at the hands of some of the world’s most powerful men. This demonstrates how that same battle fought one hundred years ago is far from over. And whilst it would be easy to feel disillusioned and overwhelmed by these ongoing revelations, as a feminist and as a woman working in the arts, I have never been more proud and encouraged by the strength, resilience and general FIERCENESS of the women I see around me and those who will be demonstrating their talents and determination as part of our debut Women in Focus Festival!
“I have never been more proud and encouraged by the strength, resilience and general FIERCENESS of the women I see around me”
As an Arts and Community Programmer, ensuring and facilitating the representation of women is at the heart of everything I do, guided by the principle that ‘if you can see it, you can be it’! And I hope this is well reflected in the vibrant and diverse programme myself and Poplar Union’s fabulous music programmer, Will, have put together for Women in Focus. Across two days visitors to Poplar Union will be able to get involved with a variety of workshops, talks, shows, film screenings and much more introducing them to, amongst others, a 16 year old national boxing champion from London, an Indian born, UK based erotic literature author, pioneering female jazz musicians and a radical feminist theatre maker and activist.
I believe the benefits of intersectional representation can only really be felt when made as accessible as possible so, with that in mind, I am proud to say that not only do we have events taking place for all ages (and genders!) but they are all, 100% free! So come down, get involved and be heard!
Check out the video below to find out more about what we have lined-up.
- Women in Focus Festival takes place at Poplar Union on 10 & 11 March and is supported by Tower Hamlets Council. Women In Focus Videographer: Fatima Niemogha