Kate Woodman: Gender Equality and All Things "Woman-World"

When I first met Kate at a restaurant in midtown Manhattan determining whether I would like to represent her, I thought to myself; quiet, un-assuming, deceptively fragile in a very lovable shy exterior.  I couldn't believe the power in the visual content and that it was juxtaposed against this otherwise soft-spoken artist.  After some discussion about her career in Portland (where she hails from) and a discussion about her commitment to showcasing a fantastic version of reality, I was pretty hooked.  I knew the work I saw printed in the book was only half-representative of the woman that stood before me, and I must say that a few months later, I'm happy that my intuition was correct.  In her latest series, "This Is A Woman's World", we get to see this creator bring forth her vision of a better world using sets and props (probably all sourced for under 50$ as is her usual ethos of creativity meets ingenuity/thriftiness model) and characters she cast herself.   She makes a statement to the workforce that women for far too long have been doing the work of men and have endured the unconscious behaviors of sexual harassment, pay inequality and a host of other shadows that, left un-addressed, will surely mean the death of a compassionate, sensible workforce with a vision toward a better future for all.   Kudos to you Kate for your boldness and commitment to support womenfolk everywhere. 


Artist Statement 

This Is A Woman’s World is a conceptual photographic essay which focuses on women working in traditionally male dominated fields.  The series aims to both celebrate and empower women by defying the gendered stereotypes of labor.  I believe this message is more powerful than ever in today’s climate where, despite overwhelming displays of solidarity amongst women, challenges in the working world continue to manifest. These challenges include gender pay gap, sexual harassment and abuse within the workplace, exploitation of women of color, the perpetuation of unpaid domestic work solely being female as well as a myriad of other oppressive forces working against women. 

The series also seeks to challenge the societal expectation of what a “working woman” looks like. Though models have always been used for creating idealized realities, by deliberately utilizing stereotypically attractive women, we draw attention to their femininity as well as create a strong juxtaposition against their perceived masculine roles. We thereby challenge the notion that a woman has to be plain to be strong; moreover, we acknowledge and celebrate the beauty of women in these industries—an attribute which is often perceived as detrimental to a woman in a male dominated field.