Loose Associations

How do you visualise a woman in the 21st century? Tai Shani

Alongside our current exhibition Feminist Avant-Garde of the 1970s: Works From the Verbund Collection, the new issue of Loose Associations takes feminism as its subject. In this short text and single accompanying image – which is available along with other writing and images in the publication via our shop – Tai Shani responds to the question: How do you visualise a woman in the 21st century?


The fortune cookie told me that the most painful sacrifice for the feminist project will be to relinquish “ woman” – relinquish it as a refuge, a point of difference and a point of self-actualisation.

The fortune cookie says “ Sacrifice your girlhood, sacrifice your womanhood”. The fortune cookie speaks in an unwelcome, unpalatable tone, an unheard tone; it is deliriously ambitious and sincere, emotive, promethean and determinate. A tone that sounds breathlessly apocalyptic in a toxic old world.

The fortune cookie says “ We are the technology, and we are the medium. We are the flesh, and we are the touch. We are the eye, and we are the vision.”

Tai Shani

Tai Shani is a London-based artist whose multidisciplinary practice encompassing performance, film, photography and installation revolves around experimental narrative texts that imagine a post-patriarchal future.

With thanks to Club des Femmes for providing the question, ‘How do you visualise a 21st Century Woman?’ from an ongoing project, which also formed the basis of a studio activity during the exhibition, Feminist Avant-Garde of the 70s.

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