so, i’m doing an interview this tuesday for a blog called womens radio calgary about the american able project, and they’ve sent me my questions in advance. holly, the photographer gets her own set of questions. here’s what they look like:
Questions for Holly
- Please explain what the American Able project is all about.
- Where did you get the idea for this project?
- Why did you choose to spoof American Apparel?
- How do you think disabled people are portrayed in our media?
- How do you portray disabled people in American Able?
- What sparked your interest in disability issues/activism?
- How have people responded to American Able? What’s the next step for this project?
- You have another gallery on your website called Queerlines. Can you tell us about this?
- Do you consider yourself a feminist?
- How do feminist ideas/theories influence your work? What feminist themes re-emerge in your work?
- What feminist issues are you most passionate about?
and here are mine. i’ve taken the liberty of drafting practice responses. tell me what you think:
Questions for Jes
- Please tell us about your disability. it makes my breath smell like tulips. wanna make out?
- How does your disability affect your everyday life? how does the phallocentric order affect my access to iced americanos, sexy theory nerds and rad parties? god. well, i wanna do it all, but apparently i’m just too special to work in the customer service industry. so i really only just have time to read lacan, milk social assistance and take self portraits and call it ‘art’ or something.
- What assumptions do people often make about you based solely on your appearance? a lot of the ones you’re making.
- In our society, women are strongly judged – even valued – on their physical appearance. As a woman with a physical disability, how do you deal with this? protein shakes and lycra, baby.
- How did you get involved in the American Able project? holly and i were roommates and i told her about disability theory and my own personal ideas and activisms.
- In the American Able pictures you are showing off your body in some pretty skimpy outfits! I think it’s super awesome of you to pose for these pictures – you’re braver than most able-bodied women! How do you feel about showing off your body? what do you mean, braver than most able-bodied women? ain’t i a woman?
- Do you consider yourself a feminist? If so, how has feminism impacted/affected the way you think about yourself and your body? much critical theory has allowed me be the smart ass i am today. and i thank dear little baby jesus. it wasn’t feminist theory that i took from first. it was post-colonial theory. and probing the experience of Indigenous people held captive by colonial rooted language and imagery. much of this correlates with disability. look at kent monkman‘s work. now think about american able. rewriting history through its artistic documents. pretty clever, no?
- What feminist issues are you most passionate about? i’m more passionate about art than feminists. but feminism is pretty cool. most of the time.
i wish my faux answers could be real. maybe blogger friend bethany, the confessor, is right about a place for anger.
At the moment, I’m not ready nor do I want to “attract flies with honey” because it doesn’t feel genuine to me. I want to push people. I know that with that desire, I need to accept that people will be angry that I’m pushing them. Despite this cognitive awareness that my work will make people uncomfortable and angry, I don’t know why I feel I have to make everyone happy.