December 2021
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Happy Women's Month

Dear members,

It is with heavy hearts that we express our deep concern and solidarity with the people of Ukraine and send love and strength to our member, the Gender Museum, Ukraine.

This month's newsletter shares events and exhibitions taking place around the world for March—International Women's Month. Check out the exhibitions listed below. There are also have a few announcements.

*NOTE DATE CHANGE*—We would like to invite members to join us on March 31st for a welcome webinar all about IAWM and want to invite new, old and future members, join us and find out how we can help each other. See the below announcement for more information. 

Be on the lookout for your membership fees invoice for 2022. Please help us by paying as promptly as possible once you have received the invoice.

All the best,
Ashley, Mona, Gaby, Sissi, Stefania, Gabriela, Glenda, Kyehyeong, Elsa, and Sinead

IAWM Board

Join Us

'Welcome Webinar. Come together old, new and future members of IAWM'.
Date: 31st March 5 p.m. CET  (17:00)
Who is invited: Everyone who is interested
Purpose: Mutual exchange of ideas, wishes, possible new projects, collaborations etc.
Outcomes: Information, new possible partners, closer relationships
Cost: Free
Location: Online, hosted by the Mexican Women’s Museum

Information about how to join the webinar will be sent out shortly.
Museo de la Mujer – CABA, Argentina

Next on March 8, 2022 - International Women's Day, the museum honors women who changed the world, with the exhibition of ceramics donated in 2019 by Cristina Corte del Castillo. Feminism is a "political project" arising from historical development, from individual to collective experience. Since the 19th century, we have scientifically known the origin of our social oppression and Patriarchy, and those of us who fight against it are MANY, not exceptional.
Women's Museum, Bavaria

In Fürth, Bavaria, Germany, home of the Museum Frauenkultur Regional - International, the Women's Day program extends over more than two months and is organized by the Women's Forum, a network of various women's organizations and institutions, and the Equal Opportunities Office of the City of Fürth. It often begins shortly before March 8 and traditionally ends with the opening of the new exhibition season of our museum on the first weekend in May. This year, on March 8, there will be an event in the center of the city with speeches, music and dance. We will start there with our poster campaign for the preservation of the museum, since the city has sold the seat and we will lose it in a year at the latest. The closing of the "Women's Month" this year is our conference "International Dialogues in the Museum," May 6 to 8: "Digital: Gender Equitable and Sustainable".

Museum of Recent History Celje, Slovenia

The first exhibition on women in the Museum of Recent History Celje. The temporary exhibition opens up space for reflection on intimate feelings and awareness of gender by presenting women's personal and collective stories, social relations and the representation of women in various spheres. The new temporary exhibition will open on March 8, and will be open for viewing until August 31, 2022. The exhibition is in Slovene and English.
Norwegian Women's Museum

We have been invited to present ourselves in Europeana. In this presentation we mention IAWM, with a focus on the collaboration for the coming virtual exhibition SHHH. Stories about abortion has been delayed, but will be launched during spring 2022. Norwegian museum’s plan for the 8th of March/IWD is participating in an outdoor parade and event in our hometown Kongsvinger. In normal years the parade ends at the women’s museum with an indoor event. It has become a tradition to invite the pupils from this upper secondary school to participate in a poster competition for the IWD event. All the posters sent in for the competition will be displayed at the women’s museum during the month of March.
Girl Museum

Every even year since 2010, Girl Museum has exhibited a Heroines Quilt. These virtual quilts embody the beauty, activism and joy of a physical quilt with each square dedicated to a girlhood heroine of a contributor. Some years we have had a theme, while others are made up of community submissions. Check it out from 1 March 2022 at Girl Museum.
Iranian Women's Movement Museum (IRWMM)

At IRWMM, we are preparing to go to Berlin to exhibit our collection "From Evin with Love"  on the occasion of 8 March. It's organized by invitation and support of the Heinrich Böll Foundation. Since the 8 March will be a local holiday in Berlin, our opening would be on 13th March. For this reason, I am updating our catalog. The current status of most of the women in prison who contributed to our exhibition has changed in our revised catalog for 2022.

Reports from Hittisau 2021

IAWM 2021 Conference Hittisau, Austria. Sixty women museums from 32 countries exchanged ideas in Women's Museum Hittisau

The 6th International IAWM Conference of Women's Museums took place at the Women's Museum Hittisau. The conference theme was  "and still we* create".  Over sixty directors and representatives of women's museums and women's museum initiatives from five continents came together at the Women's Museum Hittisau to exchange ideas, discuss and look for common ground.

On Tuesday, the conference was opened with speeches by Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen and Shirin Ebadi, Iranian Nobel Peace Prize laureate and IAWM patron. The tragic situation of Afghan women was also addressed and an appeal for a policy of humane asylum was made to the politicians responsible.

On the occasion of the opening, the Women's Museum Hittisau showed a flight of the UDDERballoon by performance artist Barbara Anna Husar (Austria), performances by the artists Ronja Svaneborg (Denmark) and Guadalupe Aldrete (Mexico) as well as dance performances by Natalie Fend and Eva-Maria Kraft (Austria).

Wednesday was dedicated to the culture of birth, the theme of the exhibition in Hittisau which was an EU project realized by the Women's Museums of Hittisau (Austria) and Merano (Italy), the Gender Museum Kharkiv (Ukraine) as well as the Centre de Cultura de Dones Francesca Bonnemaison in Barcelona (Spain). 

Among others, there were lectures by the Leading Midwife of the WHO, Frances McConville, Claudia Mandel Katz, philosopher from Costa Rica, the Vietnamese museologist Nhung Le Cam, the Norwegian curator Thea Aarbakke and the midwife of the Navajo Nation in Texas, Nicolle Gonzales. The day was concluded by a talk by the charismatic Hungarian midwife Agnés Géreb, who was placed under house arrest for fifteen months for advocating for self-determined birth."

Different meetings and workshops were held on the two days reserved for members of the International Association of Women's Museums (IAWM). Physically present in Hittisau were colleagues from Germany, Norway, Iran, Italy, Switzerland, Russia, Ukraine, France, Netherlands, Spain, Serbia, Slovenia and Austria.

Virtually we were joined over the 2 days by women from 18 countries, who were unable to attend because of the pandemic. Members joined us from Canada, USA, Hungary, Mexico, Costa Rica, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Albania, Korea, Vietnam, Australia, Portugal, Great Britain, Ireland, Senegal, Turkey and Egypt.  

"To be able to hold this conference in Hittisau was a great honour for us, but also a great challenge, especially as the conference was held hybrid. Despite the travel problems caused by the pandemic, the conference became a truly global event that once again highlighted how important the work of women's museums is in many countries."
Stefania Pitscheider Soraperra, Director of the Women's Museum Hittisau

To view more information and pictures, click here.

Notes from Virtual Attendees

Unable to attend the conference from Ireland due to public health guidance. It was great to be able to attend virtually. The theme of 'we still create' was very important message at the time when people like me were working in from home. I was delighted to recieve in the post my conference details, some red sticking tape and a request to make a mood board, which I did! I also loved my gifts from Austria - my bag and my soap. It made me feel connected to the event in a real way, getting package from Hittisau. The conference was organised very well for online users from the break out rooms to the timely connections. I really commend the Women's Museum, Hittisau for the organisation of the event, from the graphic design of the conference itself, the theme and the wonderful contributions from a host of international speakers. The efficent running of our AGM and election too - it was wonderful see all the members from different parts of the world coming together to share our experiences, new ideas and plans for our shared future.
Dr Sinéad McCoole, Mná, Ireland.
IAWM Board Member. 
It was a pleasure to attend the 2022 IAWM Conference Hittisau. The conference brought together women's museums practitioners from all over the world in a hybrid format, connecting us in-person and online. The conference demonstrated the complexity and diversity of women's reproductive health. I particularly loved Nicolle L. Gonzales' contribution, Birth as a Ceremony in Diné communities. Challenging Western-centric concepts of birthing, Nicolle highlighted indigenous healing and birthing philosophies and practices with the aim of elevating the status of indigenous knowledge production on women's medicine. Thea Aarbakke and Mona Holm's contribution SHHH! Stories of abortion and sexuality demonstrated the need for increased visibility of women's lived realities around issues of fertility, choice, and safety. To spend three days in the company of passionate women's museum practitioners, sharing their expertise and dedication to women's lives across the issues of birth, reproductive health and rights, was a unique and insightful opportunity. 
Rachel Gray (She/Her)
Feminist Museum Practitioner, Researcher and Cultural Equalities Trainer 
The International Association of Women's Museums (IAWM) is the professional organization for women's and gender museums and initiatives around the world. 
Copyright © 2022 International Association of Women's Museums, All rights reserved.

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