Cate Blanchett is an internationally acclaimed and award-winning actress, producer, humanitarian, and dedicated member of the arts community. In recognition of her continued advocacy for the arts and support of humanitarian and environmental causes, Blanchett has been awarded the Companion of the Order of Australia in the General Division; the Centenary Medal for Service to Australian Society through Acting; and the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture.
She also holds Honorary Doctorates of Letters from the University of New South Wales, the University of Sydney, and Macquarie University. Blanchett is equally accomplished and celebrated on the stage, having led the Sydney Theatre Company as Co-Artistic Director and CEO for six years alongside Andrew Upton. Some of her most notable stage roles live within productions of A Streetcar Named Desire, Uncle Vanya, Gross und Klein, The Maids, and Hedda Gabler, for which she was honored with the Ibsen Centennial Commemoration Award. Blanchett was nominated for a Tony Award for her role in The Present and was most recently seen onstage in the National Theatre’s production of When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other. She is also currently featured in photographer Julian Rosefeldt’s art exhibition, Manifesto.
Her countless extraordinary film performances have garnered Blanchett three BAFTAs, two Academy Awards and three Golden Globe Awards. She led the 71st Cannes Film Festival as Jury President in 2018. Blanchett is a patron of the Sydney Film Festival, an ambassador for the Australian Film Institute and The Old Vic theatre, and a lifetime ambassador for the Australian Conservation Foundation. She is also a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and was honored with a Crystal Award at the 2018 World Economic Forum in Davos. Blanchett is Co-Founder and President of production company Dirty Films, and a mother to four children.
Artists Gillie and Marc Schattner, on August 26, Women’s Equality Day 2019, are bringing to life a dream, the move towards equal representation in women statues.
In a moment of deep self-reflection, they realized they had been contributing to the lack of women representation in their public art. However, the artists decided they could not sit back and let history repeat itself. Something has to change, and so with their new project, ‘Statues for Equality’, they have self-funded ten new women statues.
Because of this project, New York is becoming the first city to change the dynamics considerably - as the ten women are launched as statues the number will jump from 3% to 9%. The project will launch at RXR Realty’s iconic Avenue of the Americas.
Joining ‘Statues for Equality’ are ten portraits of each woman in a groundbreaking new show that expresses diversity and gender equality. Exhibiting alongside their permanent statue sisters at 61 Broadway, NYC, they will be on show for the public for 12 months.
The women are painted on fabric from around the world, just as they as women represent the diversity of womankind, as does the soft materials that embody strength. Each piece has its own texture, shape, and feel.
The women’s faces are depicted in black and white, revealing the fine attention to detail from the artists; each line becomes part of the narrative of the portraits. However, their hair and clothes are full of colour and patterns. Flowing from the women they extend these versions and ideals of how women present themselves in society.
The use of fabric can take literal meaning; even though the material is soft, beautiful, and used as a way to express individuality. Fabric is also a carrier, babies are held close to us in wraps of material; goods and objects are transported for when we cannot hold everything; and it dresses us, for warmth and support.
The metaphor extends into the roles of women, and Gillie and Marc’s clever use of this medium, reminds us again, how important women are to our lives and the basis of society. Fabric is also another way to show our individuality.
Just as the ten women statues, made out of bronze, who will stand larger than life can teach us something about diversity and gender equality; as can these softer, tender moments of intimate and feminine representatives.
For the next 12 months, Gillie and Marc are aiming to paint 100 women, voted for by the public, who inspire greatness in our societies.
#womenforequality will become an extension of #statuesforequality – use the hashtag to vote for the most inspirational women you know, and take a photo with the paintings and statues to share Gillie and Marc’s message of equality.