JANUARY 1 2018 – AUGUST 2021

What Does it Mean to Be A Woman encourages meaningful conversation that exposes fuller gender representation—providing a platform for perspectives and experiences to shape our collective future.

The project comprises of an art exhibition with large impactful paintings, video, public engagement through social media channels, and hopefully if funding comes through a few educational events and an art film. The project is approachable and accessible to all, highlighting the wisdom women and the feminine embody beyond limited role models.

Join us as we gaze upon the notion of what it means to be a woman from the perspective of anyone willing to share.

Question – What does it mean to be a woman?
In each video participants share unique and diverse perspectives on the meaning of womanhood, allowing the viewer exposure to new ideas or possibilities about what it means to be a woman.

“My deepest jealousies and insecurities towards other women were because I was attracted to them.”
“I think about the danger of visibility as a woman.”
“Non-binary identity started me on a path of thinking about my own expression of femininity.”
“I feel like gender in the 21st century is completely irrelevant.”
“It’s been ok for girls to aspire to masculine occupations, but the flip side for boys …
“Being a woman, you’re given a female gift pack that gives you six tools to get through life.”
“I am a part of a sacred balance in life, balancing masculine and feminine energies within myself.”
“Being a woman equals being powerful and living in a constant sate of creation.”
“When I think of womanhood I think about what makes us different than men.”
“I never had a desire to do the things we have culturally infused into womanhood.”
“Being a woman is understanding what society expects then finding a creative path that maneuvers around expectations.”
“I like being small and feeling powerful along with the awareness of being other.”
“In the 21st century it’s been ok for girls to aspire to traditional masculine occupations, but the flip side for boys does not hold true.”
In progress
In progress
“To be a woman means to be part of the human race.”
“The feminist fire comes out when I feel like other women, or I can’t do something.”
“Now that I’m a mom, a woman is a She-Ro; she can hold the world in her hands.”
“Women have come so far that the use of Miss or Ms doesn’t need to reflect their marital status.”
“I am an advocate for endometriosis education and the importance of women getting answers sooner.”
“At 69 years old I don’t fit the mold for womanhood.”
“Women have an inner warrior that stands within her all the time.”
“As mothers, we raise our children while simultaneously healing from what was handed down to us from previous generations.”
“We are here to be the guardians of love.”
“Being my authentic self means giving zero fucks about what other people think of me.”
“At 83 I feel freedom being a woman.”
“I’m not allowed to have an emotion unless it’s tied to my reproductive system.”
“Women have been traumatized by Covid and they have to take care of themselves.”
In progress

By Terra Nyssa

Instinctively we are born into this world as nurtures and leaders. We are born in this world as educators, supporters, guides and healers. We are born into this world as feeling, empathetic beings. We hold a special place in our hearts for those who show us beauty, love and strength. We have a desire to emulate that, to find the inspired, and the wisdom in life all around us. But we must also address the challenges, what happens to us along our journey is crucial. Being human is challenging, being a woman human in this modern time is even more challenging. Yet along this journey we stand in the shoes of many women who have come before us, not even knowing it. We as women wouldn’t be who we are without the ancestors who have come before us and made it possible to be who we are now. Through their suffering and celebrations were able to have a voice in so many ways they didn’t. With all its beauty and challenges in this present day, I am inspired by this generation of young women. By the collaborations that are taking place between generations of women. It’s an inspiring time to be a woman! So in some ways it feels like a responsibility as a woman to create platforms and support for all women in solidarity for the human beings on this planet. For those who show up and those who can’t. Depending on where a person comes from, what they have had to endure and and what we are lifted up by, all brings fuel to the story of women today. In collaboration we learn and grow.  That’s what it means to be a woman today. 

Photo by Renate Putzka of Terra Nyssa

Paintings by Ruth Chase

Ruth engages the community by interviewing women and men about what it means to be a woman. The interviews, and other material submitted by the community informs the work, resulting in large intimate paintings.

If you’re interested in participating, please contact Ruth at RuthChaseFineArt@ymail.com