FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture is a collective co-directed by artist/activists Hannah Brancato and Rebecca Nagle. FORCE was formed in Baltimore in 2010 and today organizes actions and events in the Baltimore/DC area, in public spaces, and on college campuses around the country. FORCE uses the internet as an extension of the public space in which art can be made or presented, as a communication broadcast tool in opposition to mainstream media, and as a forum for suggesting alternative, positive visions of sex, gender, and consent in culture.
I spoke to Hannah Brancato at FORCE’s temporary headquarters and studio, housed in the labyrinthine corridors of Area 405, a former factory turned artist studio warren, on September 18, 2015. FORCE had recently moved into an enormous space in the building, and their Monument Quilt (2013–present) production tables, literature, and other materials staked out a central area that was surrounded by the hulking shapes of old machinery and furniture in storage around them. I met with Hannah at a folding table, where she was seated on a folding chair, surrounded by sewing machines, storage bins holding fabric, and literature about sexual assault and rape. We discussed several projects produced by FORCE since the group’s inception, as well as artistic influences and some works-in-progress…Read More