THE VICTORY GARDEN COLLECTIVE

Louise Eastman, Jess Frost, Tara Geer, Katie Michel, Wendy Small and Janis Stemmermann.

In late 2016, a group of women artists united to create a series of striking, witty, and engaging works in the spirit of the World War II tradition of the “victory garden.” Initially planted to support the home front food supply, these public-park and backyard gardens came to be seen as beautiful elements of communities under pressure, “morale-boosting symbols of solidarity.” “Today, our world is again in political and environmental turmoil,” the Victory Garden artists write, “and we are similarly in need of nourishment and unification.”

Pursuing publicly-engaged art projects that aim to “initiate conversation and action,” the collective has made works that unite public and private spheres, such as candy valentine hearts printed with mottos like “Rise Up” and “Protest” and a kitchen apron emblazoned with the word “Persist,” speaking to the ongoing nature of both political action and domestic work. The “Miss 2017” suffragette-style sashes call to mind both turn-of-the-twentieth century women marching in pursuit of the right to vote and mid-century beauty queens parading before judges in swimsuits and high-heels. Made for the January 2017 Women’s March on Washington, the sashes respond both to the troubling misogynistic rhetoric that characterized the 2016 presidential campaign and to the election of the former owner of the Miss Universe Pageant. This project—which included printing and distributing hundreds of paper sashes to be worn at the march—removes the sash from a space of sexual objectification, returning it to a social and political context.

 

VOTE, 2018

Designed to encourage awareness during some of the most challenging issues of our time, this set of silkscreened napkins is packed in an 8 inch box to take along to friends and family gatherings.

Limited edition 8-piece napkin set.
Dimensions: 20x20"
Material: Silkscreen on cotton
Date: 2018

 

PERSIST

A denim apron sewn and screen printed by hand. Reversible with pockets. Studio made in Brooklyn, NY.

Material: Cotton
Date: 2017

 

SUFFRAGETTE SASHES

Victory Garden Women's Art Collective created sashes for participants of the Women's Marches held on January 21, 2017. The sashes were inspired by those made for the original Suffragette movement. Over 1000 were hand printed at the Russell Janis studio and distributed all over the country for people to wear while marching.

Commemorative sashes are available as a keepsake or to wear at a future march!

Dimensions: 4x72"
Material: Silk
Date: 2017

 

 

RISE UP

On Valentine's Day, 2017, the Victory Garden Women's Collective focused on bringing awareness to the National Strike of February 17th. Heart candies and postcards were created for Planthouse Gallery. Additional Suffragette Sashes from the Women's March were printed along with a DIY downloadable Valentines Sticker Kit for people to print their own RISE UP Valentines.

Materials: Various
Date: 2017

 

NAPKIN SET

Created to help keep awareness and conversations going on important and challenging issues of our time. Packed in a pie-sized box to take along to friends and family gatherings.

Limited edition 12-piece napkin set.
Dimensions: 20x20"
Material: Silkscreen on cotton
Date: 2017

 

LOVE TO VOTE

Materials: Temporary tattoo and ink on card
Date: 2017

 

KNIT GARDEN LANDSCAPE

During World War I and II, Victory Gardens were grown in the backyards of homes and in public spaces as a civic duty to supplement food supplies as well as serving as an overall morale booster. This kind of coming together inspired the collectives own Victory Garden project. A group of woman artists, curators, gallery owners and printmakers gathered to make artworks, starting with designs for t-shirts - small miracles from tilling the soil of the current political environment.

20% of the proceeds of this project will be donated to GrowNYC's Greenmarket division where funds are used to help make fresh market produce accessible for all income levels.

Limited edition collector‘s portfolio with bag.
Material: Silkscreen on organic cotton
Date: 2016