Thursday, December 11, 2014

Texas Breastfeeding Coalition Is Starting an Art Collection

This is an idea I've had percolating for awhile, and it's finally happening! Texas Breastfeeding Coalition is in the process of building a collection of breastfeeding art.  The art is intended to be exhibited throughout Texas in the coming years, in an effort to normalize breastfeeding and to educate those who see it on the benefits of breastfeeding and the need for support to bring those benefits to fruition.

This project is in its infancy.  There are no hard and fast rules at the moment, and most of the plans are a wish list we would like to make a reality.  What we hope for is a permanent art collection that will travel the state in galleries, restaurants, libraries, coffee houses, etcetera, with the coordination of breastfeeding advocates and local coalitions.  We are looking for support and involvement in a number of ways.  You can become involved by reading for more information below and contacting

We are accepting submissions of art, and will continue to do so indefinitely.  Please email for more information as you plan your submission. Please note that our first show is currently scheduled for February 16-24, and we would like to have enough pieces together by then to fill a gallery at the Capitol.  Pieces for the Capitol exhibit will need to be - and I hate this word, but for lack of a better one - modest.  Pieces to show elsewhere do not need to take that into consideration.
Art should be framed (if appropriate), and we would prefer donations.   If a piece is on loan, we will need a signed liability release.  There is no budget allotted at this time for shipping, so artists should plan to be responsible for delivery of their piece(s).  At this time, art is being collected in Austin.  
Pieces are intended to be shown with informational signage - stats on breastfeeding benefits, personal stories of the impact of facing discrimination for breastfeeding in public or of having support (or not) to pump at work.  If you feel moved to include such information with your piece, please do so.
Pieces are not intended to be sold or judged. (It's possible that we could include photos of pieces on the TXBC website that could link to the artists so that prints could be sold. But pieces would not be for sale from exhibits.)
We would like to show diversity in ethnicity of the subjects and in feeding methods.

We need help securing spaces to show the collection.  Please contact us for available dates, then work to secure dates for shows in any venues that may want to display art.

We need someone passionate and committed to take the lead on organizing this project.  This person or team will maintain the calendar, make arrangements for travel/shipment, and be responsible for the educational element (signs to display with each piece, with information as described above).

We need a way to display the art, at least at the Capitol.  This could mean borrowing easels, or having something custom-built.  If you are available to help with either, please contact us.

The educational elements described above, we are imagining having printed on foam core signs.  It would be wonderful to have the printing of these donated.
We will need help in writing, designing, editing, etc.

We may need to raise funds for displays, signs, and shipping.  If you can donate money, please contact

We need a liability release drafted, to be signed by anyone loaning art.

We need a title for the exhibit, that will sort of tie things together thematically (beyond the theme of “breastfeeding.”  The theme should be something along the lines of “It Takes a Village” - only clever instead of clich├ęd.  Point is, the collection and the educational signage with it will be used to educate, and to stress the need for support of breastfeeding mothers and children.

It would be great to have some boxes donated to transport the framed artwork safely.

Love this submission from Brian the Birth Guy!
(And now the song lyric, "I'm so excited, and I just can't hide it!"
is running through my head.)
While this has been in my head for a long while, the time to make it really happen is now short. Please spread the word and help out in whatever way you can. I'm so excited! Really! This is going to be awesome!