We at Generation: Handmaid have some exciting news: we have teamed up with an Arizona artist and writer to headline a new project that shows through art and exhibition the faces of the pro-choice movement – The Kevlar Kimono Project.

On September 6, 2012, an essay written by writer and artist Darcy Falk appeared in Flagstaff Live! in response to the cruel remarks made by the GOP members in regards to rape and abortion. She chronicled her own reproductive history, revealing to readers that the reality and necessity of abortion, and asserted that the decision to have an abortion is a very private matter and should remain respected, protected, and out of the public eye.  You can see the original article here.

She naturally received a lot of feedback, including numerous women of all ages who wanted to share their own stories.

This is the inspiration for the Kevlar® Kimono Project, a visual representation of the reality of abortion and its place in society. Kevlar® is a bulletproof fabric, used in protective body armor in combat and tactical police applications. The Kevlar® Kimono represents a protected space in which a woman can make a decision that is right for her, based on her own beliefs and circumstances. The kimono will also portray everyday people who are pro-choice and believe that the right to choose should not be restricted and judged. Each image included in the project will act as a representation of an individual decision or opinion that is owed its due respect.

This project has already captivated the public eye. The Arizona List, an organization in Arizona that aims to elect progressive, pro-choice Democratic women to office, has caught wind of the project and offered their support. Independent filmmakers and songwriters also have offered to create their own artistic representations of the Kevlar® Kimono. Darcy plans to showcase the project in a touring exhibit to help spread the word regarding preserving the right to choose. In the next few weeks, we plan to collect images from our supporters to add to the project.

If you, as a man or as a woman, believe that the right to choose should be protected, please show your support by sending us a 2×3 image of yourself to be silk-screened and included in the kimono. Images should be 300 DPI and have a plain background, saved as a .jpeg file. However, we can try to edit your images in order to have them fit this description if you cannot do so. Images will be printed in black and white. You can send these images to photos@kevlarkimonoproject.com.

“In the days when abortion clinics were besieged and doctors were being threatened and killed by radical anti-abortion activists, I purchased two yards of Kevlar® fabric. I wanted to make a ceremonial garment, a kimono, which could be worn by a woman with a decision to make.

In the wake of the comments regarding rape and abortion made by Todd Akin and other members of the GOP, I remembered that Kevlar®, and decided that it was time to get it made.

I am certainly not advocating abortion. But there are likely always going to be situations in which abortion is preferable to carrying a pregnancy to term. This is not a decision for the state, or for few those radicals among us who believe that abortion is murder.” -Darcy Falk

Please visit the website to learn more, or email us at corina@kevlarkimonoproject.com.

 “They wore blouses with buttons down the front that suggested the possibilities of the word undone. These women could be undone; or not. They seemed to be able to choose. ”

-Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale

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