Woman to Watch: Liora Kuttler and The Feminist Photos
Liora is a Go Girl in every meaning of the word. A passionate photographer, she started The Feminist Photos, which is a Kickstarter project resulting in a photo book that explores feminism across the USA, documented through her travels across all 50 states. Support her project here.
Tell us about The Feminist Photos.
The Feminist Photos is an overarching title for a photography book project I’m developing, titled “Out of Fear: Rediscovering Feminism in America.” I began creating feminist work earlier this year in response to all the anti-women, anti-gay, and anti-immigrant legislation that was cropping up. It was a way to help me confront and work through my anger and frustrations. I donated the images to Unite Women and was shocked by the amount of attention they got. I received so many positive and inspiring messages from people who had seen the work and felt connected to it in some way. I wanted to reach back out to people who supported my work by expanding the project. If photographs of feminists in one state are inspiring, what about feminists in all fifty states? I thought it would be so powerful to be able to know that there are feminists in all corners of the USA, to see them, and to hear their individual voices. My goal is to photograph feminists across the board — people of all genders, sexual orientations, colors, political and religious affiliations…I want anyone who picks up this book to be able to see themselves in it.
What is it about photography that makes it the right medium for this project?
Growing up I experimented with many different artistic mediums, but I feel in deep love with photography six years ago and never looked back. Being photographed is an intimate and personal thing – while it can be argued that a camera acts as a separation from the world around the photographer, I also view it as a bridge. When I take a portrait, to me it’s more than just a portrait, but a conversation. I want to capture the feminists of this moment and show how we relate to and differ from feminists of the past. I want viewers of the project to be able to connect with and converse with the subjects of the photos through my lens.
You say you want to explore the USA on trains, buses and planes. Why do you want to incorporate travel into your experience?
I believe that the act of traveling is not just the physical journey of moving from place to place, but also a deliberate act of personal growth. I’m going to be on the road for six months and I’m excited to see who I’ll be by the end of it.
We hear you have a Kickstarter project lined up to help set you on your trip. Tell us about it.
I am launching my 45 day Kickstarter campaign to fund the project today, August 17th! Creators set a fundraising goal and a time period under 60 days in which they want to raise the money, and anyone can help them fund their project through pledges. If the goal amount (or more) is pledged by backers, the project is funded and the backers are charged their pledge amounts. If the project does not receive full funding, no one is charged, and the creator is welcome to refine the project and try again.
What do you hope to learn from this experience?
I am not what you would call a patriotic person and never have been. While I’m not sure what I’m hoping to learn specifically, I am hoping to gain a sense of pride in my country, especially during a time when it feels as though my country does not have a sense of pride in me.
What inspires you?
Ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. Poly-linguists. Solo travelers who go to places where they cannot speak the language and don’t know what they’re eating. Beautiful lighting, shapes, and colors. Christopher Nolan movies. Bodies. Art History. Mist and smoke. A beautiful, unrepeatable moment.
What would you like to tell women around the world about what you’re doing?
My purpose in pursuing this project is to find out what American feminism looks like, and to create a book that will allow the reader to fully experience the journey with me. I hope that feminists who come into contact with the project, across the country and across the world, would be able to stop feeling entirely alone. For people who do not know what feminism is to learn and discover it. For people to feel connected and empowered with the knowledge that even in a time when it feels as though our country and our politicians are turned against us, we are there. Everywhere. Fighting.