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Over the past few years, an international movement pushing for the decriminalization of sex work, and advocating for the rights of sex workers, has been growing. New groups like the International Union of Sex Workers have been joined by legacy organizations such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International in arguing that legitimizing and legalizing sex work and prostitution will lead to a decrease in exploitation and violence against sex workers, who often come from marginalized groups and face discrimination based on their profession.
Sex workers come from all walks of life, however, and an upcoming panel discussion at the Public School Los Angeles addresses the crossover between these practitioners, academia, and the art world. Moderated by Public School organizing committee member Maya Gonzalez, the talk features Chicago-based artist and sex worker Stevie Cisneros Hanley, whose work is currently featured in the group show Psychic Plumbing at the new Los Angeles gallery Canary. Also from Chicago is new media performance artist Wanbli Gamache, whose ritualized performances deal with authorship, intimacy, and erotic imagery. Kim Ye is a Los Angeles-based artist whose participatory performances, films, and installations are shaped by the language of BDSM, drag, and identity formation. Joining them will be Karina Vahitova, a Ukranian-born artist who was previously the associate director of communications at the Marina Abramović Institute, and who co-founded the Void Academy, which helps artists achieve financial stability.
When: Thursday, February 27, 7–9pm
Where: The Public School Los Angeles (951 Chung King Road, Chinatown, Los Angeles)
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