The High Museum of Art Holds Editing Workshops At The Art + Feminism Edit-A-Thon

The 2019 Art+Feminism campaign hosted an edit-a-thon event at the High Museum of Art in celebration of Women’s History Month on Saturday, March 30. The goal of their campaign is to improve the coverage of cis women, transgender women, feminism, non-binary folks and the arts on Wikipedia. Members of these marginalized groups are often misrepresented on Wikipedia, and Art+Feminism’s events help alleviate this issue.

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All people from different walks of life created a warm welcome with all-inclusive energy. The event was drop-in-style where participants could join in at any time. Guests were open to taking an art tour, edit Wikipedia articles and use the photo/button making booth.

 

Art Tour:

The tour featured female artists from the “Way Out There: The Art of Southern Backroads” exhibit. Three female artists were highlighted: Annie Hooper, Martha Nelson Thomas and Mary T. Smith.

 

Artwork by Annie Hooper

 

The tour guide mentioned that the sculpture by Anne Hooper was composed of cemented seashells, driftwood and house paint. Most of her pieces were stories of biblical characters. In the span of her career, Hooper created about 5,000 sculptures.

 

Artwork by Martha Nelson Thomas

 

The most distinct features of Martha Nelson Thomas’s baby figures was the leading inspiration for the Cabbage Patch Kids which was later sold by Xavier Roberts in the early 1980s. Thomas took the time to make each doll significantly different.

Artwork by Mary T. Smith

 

The tour guide explained that Mary T. Smith was born with a hearing impairment, and her peers thought she was incapable of having intellectual thought due to her impaired speech. Smith found an outlet in producing paintings and craft work. Her artwork was composed of recyclable items, and what others may think of as trash, she used as a medium for her art.

 

Editing Station:

Photo by Maliyah Worthy

 

The editing area had accessible laptops to check out along with sessions on how to edit. Participants received help on becoming a Wikipedia editor. It is not as hard as it seems to become an official editor for the collaborative encyclopedia. Others fixed and edited Wikipedia pages for some of the female artists mentioned above.

 

Button Making Station

Photo by Maliyah Worthy

 

At the button making station, there were many pictures to choose from with influential women like Frida Khalo. The hosts include button making at every event because the guests enjoy having a creative area to interact.

 

Photo booth:

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Video by Maliyah Worthy

 

At the photo booth participants received whiteboards to write their definition of feminism and take a photo as an artifact. My whiteboard had the word inclusive because if feminism is intersectional and inclusive then more marginalized groups are included in the fight for equal rights.

 

The edit-a-thon was empowering, inclusive and educational. The most important takeaway was the goal of the Art+Feminism organization: to create a more inclusive world for all underrepresented artists.