March 17, 2017, by owright
WHM Review: The ‘I’m Tired Project’ at UoN
By Emily Brady
On the 13th of March 2017, the Performing Arts Studio in the Trent Building became the site of one of the most exciting photographic projects to ever come out of the University of Nottingham.
The ‘I’m Tired’ Project – an expanding series of photographs aimed at anonymously calling out micro aggressions and celebrating diversity – is the brain child of Nottingham alumni Harriet Evans and Paula Akban. As part of Women’s History Month, the pair brought a collection of their favourite images from their female photographic subjects for display. Setting their images alongside testimony from their anonymous subjects, the sell-out event allowed people to view the images, make their own ‘I’m Tired’ statements, and take part in a talk with Evans and Akban.
During their talk, the pair discussed the inspiration behind the project, as well as their desire to make the photographs as intersectional as possible. They stated that: “as a woman, particularly a woman of colour, or a queer woman, or a woman with a disability, you know that the mainstream media will not represent you. You have to represent yourself. We chose the pictures here today to represent the many different problems that women encounter. We want to represent the people that the media does not.”
Students from the University of Nottingham were invited to take part in a photoshoot on the 14th of March, giving them the chance to become a part of the project themselves. Women from all across the university got involved, covering issues from the gender wage gap, to atheism in the Middle East, to the conflict between being black and a woman in society. It was an empowering and thought-provoking day, and the compelling images that emerged from the shoot will soon be on The ‘I’m Tired’ Project’s many social media platforms.
The pair also had advice for students facing their uncertain futures. As Evans said: “Time after university can be daunting, and from the outside looking in it can appear that everyone around you is very successful and you are floundering. You might look at us and think that we are successful too, and you’re not sure how to achieve in the same way. But you have to remember that our project started in a kitchen and some of the photos are taken on an iPhone – all it takes is an idea and the will to work hard and succeed.”
For more information on upcoming Women’s History Month events please see: www.nottingham.ac.uk/research/groups/c3r/news-events