Installation shot of Alien She at the Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University: A sampling of zines and distribution catalogues (1991-2013) primarily from the original Riot Grrrl movement. The zines cover a range of topics such as sexism, empowerment, fat activism, mental illness, gender identity, violence, racism, homophobia and sex work. Photo courtesy of the Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University.
As part of the programming related to the Alien She exhibition at Vox Populi, on view from March 7 to April 27, 2014, artist Beth Heinly will run a two-day zine workshop at Philadelphia Photo Arts Center.
Alien She is the first exhibition to critically examine the lasting impact that Riot Grrrl—the widely influential but briefly lived global punk feminist movement—has had on artists today. The movement, born in Washington D.C. and the Pacific Northwest in the early-to-mid-1980s, addressed issues such as domestic abuse, sexuality, racism, and patriarchy, with emphases on youth and female empowerment, collaborative organization, and DIY ethics. Alien She is organized by the Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), and is curated by Astria Suparak, independent curator and former director of the Miller Gallery, and Ceci Moss, assistant curator for the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, both of whom possess deep roots in the Riot Grrrl movement. They will present a "living history" of Riot Grrrl, with new work by a half-dozen contemporary artists significantly influenced by the movement's ethos, alongside a host of rare archival materials from its heyday—zines, flyers, videos, records, cassettes, and other ephemera. Engaging in direct dialogue with urgent, contemporary issues, the exhibition's public programming includes self-defense and self-publishing workshops, music shows, and a gallery talk.