Monday, April 4, 2016

The Women and Money Project

If you (a) enjoy art, (b) enjoy sharing your opinion, (c) are, identify as, are related to, or care about a woman or a group of women, or (d) have ever dealt with money, you should mark your calendar for an exhibition called the Women and Money Project. Through art and related programming, the exhibition will create a forum for audiences to investigate and engage their understanding of the relationship between “women, art, money, exchange, and social hierarchies.”  The exhibition, which will take place later this year, is being organized by The Minnesota Chapter of Women’s Caucus for Art, the University of Minnesota, and The Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.

Full disclosure: I recently co-hosted a fundraiser for the exhibition. However, the exhibition should be of interest to all folks that meet any of the above criteria. Most people recognize the disparity that exists between the financial literacy and incomes of men and women.  According to the 2015 Gender Gap in Financial Wellness Report, an annual report published by Financial Finesse Reports, women are less confident in general investment knowledge and money management decisions than men. In fact, this lack of confidence has created a market for financial tools—books, workshops, counseling, etc.—developed for and marketed towards women. Additionally, even though the gender gap narrows with age, women continue to face more challenges with retirement than men. Not only do women generally have lower incomes and savings than men, but due to longer life expectancies, women face higher retirement and healthcare costs. 

The exhibition moves beyond this high level understanding of the relationship between women and money and will take a deeper dive by offering a “creative and human perspective” on the topic.  The exhibition will showcase female artists who have been asked to explore questions such as how “women think about and value money, the emotional impact of the wealth disparity, and the ways in which money (or lack thereof) affects female identity, money and its emotional and relational impact.” Stay tuned for more information regarding what will surely be a thought-provoking event!

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