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Bryony Kimmings

Bryony Kimmings (image: XB)

Domestic Disturbance evening raises funds on International Women’s Day

A fantastic £547 was raised by the School Creative Centre and riart Grrrls in aid of Refuge on International Women’s Day (IWD) on 8 March. Domestic Disturbance, which involved collaborations from over 50 women, was a riartous evening of performance, live art, knitting, exhibitions and scrumptious food. Xaverine Bates reports back on the outrageously quirky celebrations.

Rude cupcakes

The Edible Woman Cafe

Celebrations kicked off with the Rye Guerilla Knitters taking up their needles in the main hall accompanied by funky tunes from DJ Janey M. Delicious scents wafted from the Edible Woman cafe, featuring organic and foraged food created by Esther Sam – particularly saucy were her rude cupcakes that provoked many to feel a wee bit naughty whilst nibbling.

Hilary Watkins hosted her ‘Story Laundry’ across the corridor from a wide-ranging exhibition curated by Nikki Tompsett, Sarah Money of Rye Art Gallery and myself, including a solid glass table complete with glass food and cutlery by Dot Hill, a film depicting the plight of child brides by Shammi Begum, Sinéid Codd’s doll’s house replete with tiny glass animals up to no good, to name but three, alongside a host of brilliant paintings, drawings and prints by over 30 local female artists.

Miranda Sharp

Miranda Sharp (image: Lucinda Wells)

Meanwhile, Jenny Edbrooke memorialised willing volunteers’ mammaries with her splendid Boob Print workshop and those brave enough to peep through the sumptuous velvet curtains were delighted by Miranda Sharp’s Peep Show, a subversive take on the traditional strip-tease. I also peformed my inaugural piece of live art with Steamed Up, a discourse on domesticity & depression with reference to the 1970s Wages for Housework campaign using a vintage ironing board and original Women’s Lib newspapers donated to riart Grrrls by local feminist activist Rachel Lever.

Rye Guerilla Knitters

Rye Guerilla Knitters

As if that weren’t enough, those who had braved the tumultuous winds and rain wended their way through the corridors resplendent with poems and short stories by local writers to be treated to an evening of song, stand-up and hilarity.  Compèred by performance poet Kate Tym, who treated us to her witty take on life as a domestically disturbed mum, and Jenny Edbrooke, whose irreverent style had everyone in stitches, these wonderful women paved the way for an amusing evening for a cause with a distinctly unamusing message.

Kelly Andrews from Refuge, whose services are threatened due to recent budget cuts, started proceedings with an extremely informative slideshow detailing just how our funds would be put to good use in helping local women and children, who have experienced or are caught up in domestic violence, reminding us all of the importance of supporting the extremely worthy cause underlying our celebrations.

Following this, divine singer Rachel Cuming, also known as Abraham, whose ethereal voice uplifted our spirits and set the stage for the evening’s entertainment. She preceded hilarious comedy duo Croft & Pearce, who put on a brilliant series of sketches featuring suicidal housewives, unhygienic sanitary operators and gawky girls cringeworthily flirting at the office party. Naïve pop songwriter GardyLoo SPeW wowed the audience with a completely bonkers, avant-garde display of song and piano playing, which belied her musical talent.

Last but unmistakeably not least was Bryony Kimmings, resplendent in Rapunzel-style garb and trainers, who told us the tale of her artist’s residency in Portugal, complete with inspired vignettes of the characters she met there and their tributes to lost loves. The evening ended with her extremely rude, unbelievably hilarious tribute to Bob Dylan, Subterranean Vaginal Blues (warning – the lyrics in this song are extremely explicit).

The evening was one of hilarity, subversion and sensitivity – raising funds for a hugely important cause. Many thanks to all those who supported us and took part. riart Grrrls are hoping to stage a Ladyfest in Hastings for IWD next year: watch this space!

Domestic Disturbance exhibition

Image: Lucinda Wells



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Posted 11:28 Wednesday, Mar 20, 2013 In: Arts News

Also in: Arts News

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