Diversity and Inclusion within an Exhibition about Women

Exhibition’s Intention, Goals, and Impact

My project is meant to show representations of women from various cultures varying in occupations, backgrounds, and roles. The exhibition would highlight predetermined expectation and idealized forms of women from their respective cultures. I hope to enlighten viewers to the different expectations and representations of women. I also hope the project would evoke the feeling of empowerment to woman based on what the viewer sees or could relate to. The pieces themselves will be informative of the roles of the women and illuminate their beauty. Women were depicted in different ways based on social standards at the time, meanings, and context. I want the exhibition to be accessible and welcoming to everyone. I would hate for someone (majority females) to see the exhibition and not feel a connection nor represented.

The Goods and The Bads

The best case scenario is that everyone of all identities and genders like the exhibition. They found either something that represented them or they connected to a piece. The exhibition would be a major success if it gets the viewer to think about the objects and how they connect, adding to the meaning of the exhibition. The best case scenario follows principle 3, “We prioritize design’s impact on the community over the intentions of the designer” and principle 5, “We see the role of the designer as a facilitator rather than an expert” from Design Justice Network. I want my design impact to be meaningful because that would mean the audience took something from it. Furthermore, following principle 5 would make make the exhibition more impactful.

The worst case scenario is no one liking my project and receiving negative hate.. Furthermore, no viewers of any background relating or connecting to any of the pieces. That means I failed at prioritizing my design impact and had no representation of anyone. The objects I picked was only one culture or just European artist and I only picked male artisan’s work.

Personal Identities Influence

As an African American female, I am part of a minority, thus I would want to represent my minority. I might be tempted to include more African or African American pieces to show different aspects of beauty. However, this exhibition is about all women throughout time so I can’t have my identity take over what this project is about. As a female, my identity would influence which pieces I pick because I might connect with some of them. I also struggle to read, thus the format of the labels would be easy to read. For example, instead of using justify as an alignment, I would use left align. This helps people who are neurodivergent keep track of where they are. The font would be easy to read and the space in-between lines would be 1.15 so it don’t like too clustered.

Missing Perspectives, Experiences, and Communities

As much as I would like my exhibition to be diverse, it is an exhibition about women. Thus I wasn’t planing to have any pieces that have men as the subject. The project itself is limiting because I am only focusing on one community. In addition, there are different types of people that identify as females (cis females, trans females, etc.) Thus, I would have to find work about or by people within those communities. This has been a little challenging because I am working with works in the public domain. I place on fixing this by doing more research on artist that tackles the ideals of female beauty and consider asking for a loan. I could also change the way I search for art and instead of just using the term female or girl, I’ll use more open terms. I also wouldn’t be able to cover every woman’s experiences throughout time because I am only doing 10 items, so I am trying to have one object focus on the top 10 beauty standard, I think is important. Because I am picking the most important standards, people may not feel the same and think something else should be highlighted. To help, the misrepresented and/or missing ideals, I am thinking of getting other’s perspectives on the objects I chose.