Beyer to open I Am Woman ex­hi­bi­tion

Stratford Press - - News - By AL­ICE COWDREY

A New Zealan­der who em­bod­ies the con­cept of ‘I Am Woman’ is com­ing to Strat­ford to open a sig­nif­i­cant ex­hi­bi­tion at Strat­ford’s Percy Thom­son Gallery.

Ge­orgina Beyer will open the

I Am Woman ex­hi­bi­tion which will show­case new works of 82 fe­male artists with Taranaki con­nec­tions. The ex­hi­bi­tion will ac­knowl­edge 125 years of women’s suf­frage in New Zealand and is be­ing cu­rated by gallery di­rec­tor Rhonda Bun­yan.

“The artists have been asked to dig deep and iden­tify parts of them­selves that de­fine what it means to be a woman.

“The brief is wide. Each woman has a unique view of her place in the world through her own per­sonal jour­ney. No two sto­ries are the same.”

Fea­tur­ing women artists from Taranaki as well as guest artists, the ex­hi­bi­tion will be opened on De­cem­ber 14 by Ge­orgina who will also give a gallery talk the fol­low­ing morn­ing.

Ge­orgina is the for­mer MP for Wairarapa and the world’s first trans­sex­ual to be elected to gov­ern­ment of­fice. She was also the world’s first trans-gen­dered mayor af­ter tak­ing out the Carter­ton of­fice in 1995.

Rhonda says Ge­orgina is per­fect for the role as she em­bod­ies the theme of the show. She says Ge­orgina is a woman for the times, hav­ing claimed her iden­tity, whether that was ac­cepted by oth­ers or not. “She is a feisty women who makes no ex­cuses for who she is. So of­ten as women we make ex­cuses for things that are hap­pen­ing in our lives and the de­ci­sions we make. We don’t re­ally claim who we are all the time be­cause of the pres­sures and ex­pec­ta­tions we face.”

The ex­hi­bi­tion is be­ing run with the help of fund­ing from the TSB Com­mu­nity Trust and will fea­ture the re­lease of a new book by Strat­ford Dis­trict coun­cil­lor Glo­ria Webby, Cel­e­brat­ing Women of the Strat­ford Dis­trict —

25 years of fe­male Ci­ti­zen Award Re­cip­i­ents, as well as paint­ings, pot­tery, fi­bre art, sculp­tures, photography and po­etry.

■ Ge­orgina will open the show’s open­ing night on Fri­day, De­cem­ber 14 and will give an in­for­mal talk at the gallery the next day at 11am. The ex­hi­bi­tion runs un­til Jan­uary 27.

Ge­orgina Beyer

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