Celebrating the Female Body
by Demystifying the Vulva
Vagina China is a large-scale community art project by The Women's Art League.
We are creating an exhibition that celebrates, honors and demystifies the female body—specifically, the vulva (more commonly known as the vagina.)
We began this project in October 2016, on the eve of electing our first female president. We wanted to celebrate women by creating a commemorative set of “White House Vagina China,” with cast vulvas in the center.
When another president was instead elected—one who felt entitled to do “anything” to women, including “grab them by the pussy”—we realized that our mission was actually much larger and much more important.
We sent out a “casting call” for ladies to cast their vulvas and had an incredible response with hundreds of women answering the call. As a result, our project dramatically expanded and evolved through the overwhelming support of so many women from our community wanting to participate.
We are now making 13 different sets of Vagina China. Each collection references classical pottery patterns and is adorned with cast vulvas that explore current issues that impact women today—from periods to pleasure, from sex work to social activism.
Vagina China is empowering and celebratory. Our art honors the vagina, and all her variations of shape, size and figure. In the word of Pussy Riot's Straight Outta Vagina, "Don't play stupid, don't play dumb. Vagina's where you're really from."
We believe in the transformative power of art to challenge conventional thinking, to heal, and to ultimately change the world.
Our White House china set was replaced by "Vive la Résistance," inspired by The Women's March and the Pink Pussyhat Revolution and named for the 1940 Résistance, a collection of French movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France. Many résistants often spoke of some "climax" when they saw some intolerable act of injustice, after which they could not longer remain passive.
Our mission is to make art that celebrates the vulva by demystifying it; to bringing light awareness, and conversation about this part of the female body. This part of the female body is often objectified but is rarely reflected upon and revered. Our bodies come in all shapes, sizes, ages, and colors, and from all kinds of backgrounds. Every body, and every vulva, is a work of art.