give us a smile, sweetheart (dyke, whore, slut)

UV sensitive knitted baby blanket
In the dark

The UV sensitive wool is dormant in the dark and the message contained in the baby blanket remains hidden.

Scroll over image to see the effect of sunlight on the blanket

In the Sunshine

The UV sensitive wool is activated by sunlight, revealing the words ‘dyke’, ‘slut’ and ‘whore’.

Blanket of Shame¬†baby blanket was knitted using silk, UV sensitive yarn and menstrual blood soaked yarn. The crocheted words in baby-blue “give us a smile, sweetheart” are visible at all times but the baby-pink words “dyke”, “whore” and “slut” are only illuminated when the blanket is exposed to sunlight.

We begin binding children with gendered constraints before they’re born. “Is it a boy or a girl?” we ask of the in utero feotus. Gendered questions and assumptions, often considered well-intentioned, can become smothering and restrictive and reveal destructive, stiffling undertones when exposed to scrutiny – when held in the light of the sun.

Lowdown
Project

UV sensitive baby blanket

Materials
  • silk
  • UV sensitive yarn (glows baby-pink in the sunshine)
  • baby-blue yarn
  • menstrual blood soaked yarn
Location + Time
  • Meridian – The Midsumma Visual Arts Exhibition

45 Downstairs Gallery, Melbourne, Australia, Jan 16-19 2016

  • MOTHER Art Prize

Mimosa House, London, May 2019

Blanket of Shame in Meridan Gallery

UV sensitive yarn being activated by artist with black light torch