NYC Billboards Will Get A Feminist Makeover This Summer

by Lara Rutherford-Morrison

Billboards are a lot of things — colorful, loud, occasionally funny — but “inspiring” and “thought provoking” aren’t usually on the list. What if, instead of endless advertisements, you could walk around NYC and see kickass art by female artists? This summer, you can check out a feminist art exhibition on billboards across New York City, thanks to non-profit art organization SaveArtSpace. Starting June 26, art by 10 different female artists will replace ads on billboards in more than a dozen locations.

Co-founded by Justin Aversano and Travis Rix, SaveArtSpace has been working to bring more art into public spaces in cities like New York, L.A., Miami, and Louisville since 2015, with the goal of creating an “urban gallery experience” and “inspir[ing] a new generation of artists.” This latest exhibition, titled “The Future Is Female,” will showcase work by female artists in a variety of media.

In an interview with the Huffington Post, artist Marie Tomanova, who curated the exhibition with four other female curators, discussed how she chose the works in the collection, including Elise Peterson’s piece, “Grace Meets Matisse,” pictured below. Tomanova said,

When selecting works for “The Future Is Female” I was looking for works with immediate power, celebrating ALL women. Women who are fierce, loving, brave and unstoppable, tough and sometimes fragile, daring, dreaming, creating, women who are vulnerable but always embracing, women who are powerful!

“Through ‘The Future Is Female’ we got an opportunity to show work of women who explore and narrate womanhood in many different ways, layers and angles,” Tomanova told Huffington Post. The works on display come from photographers, sculptors, illustrators, and other artists, to show a variety of diverse perspectives. Pictured below are two works in the exhibition, "One Pound, Twelve Ounces" by Jess Whittam and "Street Characters (5 female figures)" by Fanny Allié.

The Future Is Female opens across New York City next Monday, June 26. You can find out more about the exhibition, including where to find work by each artist, at the SaveArtSpace website.