Sistershow Revisited, an exhibition about the history of feminism in Bristol 1973-1974, is being supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The history of Sistershow, a Bristol-based feminist group who used theatre to communicate political messages, will be collected and preserved thanks to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, it was announced in September. The £10,000 grant will be spent on creating an exhibition, a publication and subsequent educational activities that will take place at Centrespace Gallery, 6 Leonard Lane, Bristol from 5th – 26th May, 2011.
By 1973 the Women’s Liberation Movement (WLM) in Britain had mobilised thousands of women to challenge sexism in their everyday lives. Many local groups emerged to support an ever-growing social movement. Bristol was no different. Women were involved in setting up women’s centres, publishing their own media such as newsletters and the local Bristol WLM journal, ‘Enough,’ as well as finding new ways to spread the message of Women’s Liberation. Sistershow was part of this. The group used humour, dramatics and art to explore the feminist issues of the time. They challenged stereotypes about the humour-less feminist whilst exploring new forms of gender and sexual identities.
Sistershow Revisited will enable new audiences to take a fresh look at Bristol’s feminist past. There are opportunities to help volunteer on the project by conducting research, learning about oral histories, updating the project blog (http://sistershowrevisited.wordpress.com), developing educational activities and exhibition plans. There will be regular meetings throughout the project to engage volunteers, the next will be taking place on Tuesday 7th December at Cafe Kino.
Commenting on the award, project co-ordinator Deborah Withers said, “Sistershow is an important part of Bristol and UK feminist history that has so far been overlooked. Revisiting it today will challenge stereotypes about feminism, both past and present.”
The Head of Heritage Lottery Fund for the South West, Nerys Watts said: “Our heritage is as much about the people and ideas that shaped our recent past as it is about ancient buildings and historic events. For that reason, in the 40th anniversary year of the Women’s Liberation Movement, we were keen to support this project which recalls and celebrates the response of people in Bristol to a key period in the 20th century, whose lasting influence is still felt
For further information please contact Project Co-ordinator Dr. Deborah Withers 07940 320 113