Rape kit art fights sexual assault, reclaims ‘snowflake’ label


Amy Tingle began the project after she was called a ‘snowflake’ as a slur when she criticized an ice cream shop’s logo.

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As Amy Tingle carefully cuts each snowflake out of thin, white paper, one phrase repeats in her head: “No more.”

Tingle, a Montclair-based artist, has been creating snowflakes with the identifying information of women who choose to share their sexual assault stories with her. At this unique historical moment for victims of sexual assault, Tingle hopes going public with what happened to them will be empowering.

“No more,” she thinks as she contorts a piece of paper into tiny sections.

“No more,” she thinks as she cuts designs into the folds.

“No more,” she thinks as she unfolds the paper and slowly, methodically writes the names, ages and stories of the people who have decided to come forward.

To Tingle, the project is about breaking the silence she says has allowed sexual assault and the objectification of women to continue largely unabated. With each snowflake she makes, she said, she intends for people to feel a little more comfortable reporting a rape or speaking out against catcalls.

“I love that phrase, ‘Time’s up,'” Tingle said Thursday. “Because I feel like it is.”

The project began a few weeks ago, when Tingle posted a call to action on Facebook and Instagram. She asked victims of sexual assault to send her their stories, either using their names or anonymously, so she can make a snowflake for each of them to place alongside other snowflakes with sexual assault statistics.

Tingle makes the snowflakes at her art studio and gallery, The Creativity Caravan, using medical paper like the kind used to collect debris from women’s bodies for rape kits when they report a sexual assault to police. So far, she has received about 30 stories.

I am cutting this fragile paper today and feeling so grateful to all the women who are reaching out to me with their names and stories. Please know that anonymous is MORE than okay. I understand everyone is in a different stage of processing assault, even years and years later. I am simply so honored to make snowflakes for every woman who feels ready to share any part of it – you are heard, you are believed. #snowflakeproject #snowflakes #timesup #metoo #sexualassault #rape #lipofbattle #feminism #feministart #feminist #socialjusticewarrior

A post shared by Amy Tingle (@tingle) on Jan 7, 2018 at 11:58am PST

Although Tingle said she has been incorporating sexual assault and the objectification of women into her own collages for a few years, the snowflake project was born after she spoke out against the logo of a local ice cream shop. In December, she wrote an open letter on Facebook to the Montclair-based Dairy Air Ice Cream Co. criticizing what she said was its “sexualized” logo of a female cartoon cow with its butt stuck in the air.

The hate mail poured in immediately and with fervor. Tingle …read more

Source:: New Jersey Real-Time News

      

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