Acrylics on CanvasKlara, 202040 x 40 cm

If women were better friends and allies, could they crack open exclusive power glass ceilings to the benefit of all? The philosopher Mary Wollstonecraft tried to mobilise women in the 1790s to become more educated and vocal. So did the suffragettes over 100 years later. In 2020, following at least three waves of feminism, where are we at? Laws and views on women’s roles have changed. #MeToo movements have swept across the world. Environmentalist heroines like Greta Thunberg and politicians like Jacinda Ardern have inspired with their leadership. There are more female prime ministers in the world, and Kamala Harris is to be the first black woman US Vice President. A first sculpture of Wollstonecraft has just been erected amid heated debate. Discussions on gender are ablaze. The #BlackLivesMatter movement has rightly called for more ethnic diversity in feminist debates. But how do women relate more personally? Could they be better allies? In my paintings, I often study and celebrate (underrepresented) female gazes on women – on how women look at each other, in solidarity, difference, rivalry and friendship. These gazes are complex and bear subversive power. This painting is of Klara – mother, psychiatrist and my good childhood friend.