‘2019’ was an amazing full on year for the 100 First Women Portraits exhibition!
Over 104,000 people have seen the 100 portraits which, so far, have traveled from the West to the East and back again – via the Midlands. Following a short 3 week rest, the show will soon be commencing its travels again to Brighton in February.
Much support, during the tour, came directly from the women whose achievements it chronicles. Wherever ‘First Women’ landed, its local heroines came out in force to support us. Despite their photographic likenesses travelling together for the last 52 weeks, in many cases the exhibition stops were the first time these women got to meet and celebrate each other in the flesh.
And where pioneers gather, energy grows. To our great delight, lots of Firsts have since decided to collaborate, work together and share ideas. Show by show, a natural community has formed, gathering together in the spirit of sisterhood, support, mutual admiration and inspiration out of which another level of potential has sprung.
Proving that pioneering spirit isn’t a one-off thing, in the last year many Firsts have birthed more new ‘offspring’ of their own; books, films, expeditions, documentaries, new and motivating roles, further acts of inspiration.
Last October, Anita attended Suzi Quatro’s documentary film premier in Bristol. During the Q&A she spoke of being photographed as a ‘First’ and in that moment Anita got a sense of the web that ‘First Women’ has created, connecting people in ways she could never imagine. Commenting “Hearing someone talk about your legacy, hearing that it has its own energy and identity filled me with gratitude and pride!”
“And in the spirit of that, my heartiest of thanks to anyone that has given support by their interest, attention and feedback since the project’s inception in 2008. Especially to all of you who supported from a distance through the Chuffed crowdfunder
“I always wanted this portrait collection to be a celebration – and I got my wish. Every gallery that hosted has shown it at it’s best, culminating at the end of 2019 in Leicester – and if you’d asked me how my ‘vision of the exhibition’ looked in my mind’s eye ten years ago, then the manifestation of the exhibition at New Walk, Leicester was it, all 100 Firsts under one roof, in one room…powerful and immersive – a dream come true!”