Em-URGE-ing Voices

Your urgent thoughts, urging action

Artist We Love: Stephanie Feldman

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July 21, 2016

Content Note: The videos in the Be Heard Project contain detailed descriptions of sexual assault and rape.

Art and the creators behind some of our favorite work have changed as digital media maintains its hold on audiences the world over. Instagram has become the world’s museum, and finding and appreciating art has become easier than ever. This summer, we want to take a minute to appreciate some of our favorite artists who create work that inspires and excites us as reproductive justice advocates, intersectional feminists, and culture agitators.

Artist Name: Stephanie Feldman 

What encouraged you to become an artist?
I’ve always gravitated towards creative outlets. For a long time I thought music was what I would be pursuing for the rest of my life. When I found myself questioning that and needing to transition into a different direction I ended up being pretty lost. It wasn’t until I found film and started expressing myself creatively again that I felt like I had finally found a purpose. I realized that I feel the most alive and happy when I am channeling my energy artistically and that kind of realization is liberating. If you had told me a while back that I would be an “artist” I probably wouldn’t have believed you. I used to think that term was mostly synonymous with fine art and my skills in that department aren’t exactly top notch. But my horizons broadened far beyond that notion as I became acquainted with various forms of media and recognized that I had the capacity to utilize them innovatively. It is art’s very nature to be unbound that I find the most exciting.

What is one of your favorite pieces that you have created over the years?
My favorite so far, and current main focus, is my project Be Heard. The project is a video platform for survivors of sexual violence to speak out. My art is a manifestation of my beliefs, my own experiences and myself. I started Be Heard because I was raped and I needed to confront it. This was the best way I knew how. I’ve continued Be Heard because I’ve recognized its value as both a therapeutic aid and a tool for social change. My art is formed from self-expression with the intention of conveying a message about shared experiences. It is not just a reflection of who I am; it is a reflection of me processing myself and the world around me, while encouraging others to do the same. Viewers are not onlookers but participants. I love Be Heard because it so beautifully embodies what I hope to do as an artist: actively and positively impact others.

Who are the artists or activists that inspire you?
I honestly don’t have one artist, activist, or even person that inspires me above the rest. I don’t like to focus my inspirations singularly. I’m moved by all those who I see changing our or even just someone’s world.

Do you have any advice for budding talent out there?
Stay true to yourself. Follow your passion and don’t take no for an answer.


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