The Sustainable Guide to Uterus Ownership | A Lecture by Taylor Wilson
For Spring 2017's Women's History Month, PVCC Fine Arts student Taylor Wilson presented her lecture titled "The Sustainable Guide to Uterus Ownership". Held on March 29th and attended by students of Karen Fehr (health and wellness) and Tatum Voeller (sustainability), Taylor addressed the taboo topic of menstruation. Her lectured called attention to global mistreatment of women and presented sustainable feminine care products such as reusable cloth ads, Thinx brand underwear, and menstrual cups as viable options to pads and tampons.
Taylor's presentation also brought up a remarkable statistic: "According to flow, the average woman throws away 250-300 pounds of pads and applicators in a lifetime, and considering the average woman menstruates for 38 years, that’s about 62, 415 pounds of garbage!" Taylor discussed the material benefits of switching to sustainable products, "An estimate is that over the course of a lifetime a woman could save $4000 by switching to use of a menstrual cup."
We got a chance to ask Taylor more about her lecture. She shared with us the motivation for this talk, her experience at PVCC and what she hopes listeners came away with:
What is your major/medium as an art student?
I work in a way that doesn't restrict me to certain mediums. Really, my process is to work from a concept to whatever medium best represents it. I usually start with some form of interview process where I ask others around me questions related to my topic in order to generate ideas for what will best work.
What motivated you to give this talk?
I became interested in the topic of menstruation after becoming aware of sustainable menstrual products like the DivaCup, which were a healthier option than what I had been raised to be aware of. In doing research, I discovered many of the stigmas and taboos that women internationally have to deal with that can even prevent them from having access to information about their bodies.
Describe your experience as a PVCC art student.
I have had an amazing experience in PVCC's art program. I came from doing IB Art in high school and needed someplace that would allow me to continue to foster that development and growth with a bit more conceptual rigor than I would find in a basic art class. The classes that I took over the last two years, especially with Adria Pecora, have done that and then some. I've been given to many opportunities to push myself and my work to a place that I would not have been able to achieve on my own, and I am so appreciative of that.
Describe a positive interaction had before, during or after your talk (either with a faculty member or participant).
Many of the questions that I received during my lecture were encouraging in that there were people that were genuinely interested in the new ideas I was presenting, and I received a request to submit an application to teach most of the same information at a local summer camp.
What do yo hope listeners take away from your lecture?
I hope the people that came to hear me speak came away with knowledge that there are more options in the world than just the disposable products we have all been taught to be aware of, and that they are at least willing to try something like a menstrual cup that could save them money and could prevent more non-biodegradable waste from filling landfills and polluting the environment. I also hope that I was able to spread awareness of the need for women in the developing world to have access to information about their bodies and of the taboos that need to be broken in order for them to have a better quality of life.