Monday, May 2, 2016

(REVISED) FIRE: A #VulnerabilityVigil, Sun, May 8, 1pm, Gov't & Yates, Victoria


A #VulnerabilityVigil responding to the FIRE in Fort McMurray
Sunday, May 8
1 pm
Corner of Government and Yates
Victoria, BC
All welcome.

I have revised the theme of this month's #VulnerabilityVigil in response to the fire and mass evacuation in Fort McMurray.

I will stand naked on the street with a sign that says: FIRE. 

(See for more info about #VulnerabilityVigils)

Why would a shy, cranky, basically misanthropic, not to mention dumpy, mother of two be doing this work? On Mother's Day even? For more than 10 years?

The answer to me is so obvious: I feel such a strong sense of URGENCY!!!

My sense of urgency and vulnerability has been heightened because of the fire. I have to address the terrible awareness that this kind of disaster is probably part of the "new normal."

I feel solidarity with the people of Fort McMurray. If I had a son, he might be working there, like so many other sons, brothers and dads who need to make a living. 

I feel solidarity with the people of Fort Chipewyan and other First Nations people on the front lines whose lands and rivers have been badly harmed by the extraction of oil. 

It's obvious to me that both "groups" have been brutally hurt by consequences of a global oil economy. 

None of us has the ability to remove ourselves from this economy. 

You don't believe in it? Neither do I. But I'm asking you to understand that you're still part of it.

You do believe in it? Probably because it works for you? I'm asking you to understand the harm it does, not just to others who you'd prefer to forget, but all of us.

Do you use money? Do you have a paycheque? Do you work at a job? Where maybe what you're doing contributes to the marginalization of others? (If you don't, please let me know where this type of job exists.)

Do you shop at stores? Do you eat food that wasn't grown in your neighborhood? Do you have material goods that don't come from a faraway land? Do you have a pension? Do you invest? Do you go places in motor vehicles? Have you been on a plane lately? Et fucking cetera. 

We are all connected and complicit--and, at least currently, stuck with a broken system. To pretend the Fort Mac fire is a "natural disaster" or, conversely, "just desserts," helps no one. 

We are all in this together. The sooner we get that, the sooner we move forward.

The ethos of the Human Body Project and #VulnerabilityVigils has always been about how we are all in this together. I use my body and my own vulnerability to, on a small level, walk the talk. 

People are always welcome to join, dressed or not.

Thanks, Tasha

P.S. I still encourage everyone to see Rape is Real and Everywhere at a city near you:

Here is the info for the show in Victoria:

Rape is Real and Everywhere 
Victoria Event Centre
May 17, 8pm
Tickets $15 plus service charges

RIR&E Victoria show tickets:

RIR&E Victoria Facebook event:

The sign for this month's #VulnerabilityVigil will say RAPE. For a #VulnerabilityVigil I stand naked on the street (often with supporters, dressed or undressed) holding a sign with a word that draws attention to our mutual vulnerability as humans.

I use nakedness as a way to embody vulnerability.

As a mother of two daughters, I think about how rape is real and everywhere at least daily. I created the work of the Human Body Project and #VulnerabilityVigils because of my kids (see 

Our culture would like to be blind to rape in all its forms. The unfortunate truth that most sexual assault is committed by men in positions of trust parallels the way our institutions create and uphold the structures that threaten humanity's survival. 

Why do the perpetrators think it's ok? Because, on some level, they feel entitled. Way too often--as the news stories and statistics show, and as survivors know--they are.

#VulnerabilityVigils are part of an ongoing art/activism project and were created:
-To "be the change"
-To share / express / create space for vulnerability
-To stand in some solidarity with those who are most vulnerable
-To hold ourselves in some accountability for the atrocities our culture perpetrates and perpetuates

Other artists who are working to get conversations started about rape include Emma Cooper and Heather Jordan Ross, co-producers of the comedy show Rape is Real and Everywhere. It features seasoned stand-up comedians who are rape survivors. They use humour as a celebration of resiliency, an antidote to violation. This explosive show puts faces and stories to a taboo epidemic with nameless victims and is coming through Victoria on a national tour.


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