As part of the 2016 Liverpool Biennial, artists Sarah Browne and Jesse Jones presented a live video broadcast from News from Nowhere, a radical community bookshop in Liverpool. The broadcast is archived here and features audience contributions made online via Facebook, Twitter and Google+ using the hashtag #pparchive.
This broadcast explores historic state violence enacted through gynaecological means. Featuring material culture historian Dr. Lisa Godson and self-identified “cyborg witch” Klau Kinky of Catalan collective GynePunk, this event identifies the Contagious Diseases Acts of the 1860s as a key moment in the legislation of state violence against women in Ireland and the UK.
With this event, the artists and their guests propose a supplanting of the role of the state-sanctioned broadcast into domestic spaces. The online audience is invited to discuss and challenge the terrestrial illegalities of reproductive rights for women.
The Truncheon and the Speculum was a live video broadcast presented as part of the Liverpool Biennial 2016
Written and directed by Sarah Browne + Jesse Jones
Featuring Lisa Godson & Klau Kinky / Gynepunk
Executive Producer: Ailbhe Murphy, Create
Digital Producer: Charmian Griffin
Production Manager: Carl Davies
Production assistant: Suzanne Dempsey-Sawin
Camera Operator: Rachel Givens
Vision Mixer: Julieann O’Malley
Sound recordist / mixer: Mel Paget
Communications: Charmian Griffin, Katrina Goldstone, Joanne Karchevia
Filmed and broadcast live online by FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology)
Shot on location at News from Nowhere Bookshop, Liverpool
Intro photographs © Miriam O’Connor
Medical illustrations by Wellcome Images
Music: Sissy, Sail and Rail, sissydublin.bandcamp.com
Costume: Anna Cosgrave, www.repeal.ie, in aid of the Abortion Rights Campaign, Ireland
Thanks to: Patrick Fox, Rachel Anderson, Cis O’Boyle, Maria Ng, News from Nowhere bookshop & Next to Nowhere Community Centre, Michelle Doyle, Miriam O’Connor
The Truncheon and the Speculum is part of the project In the Shadow of the State by Sarah Browne & Jesse Jones co-commissioned by Artangel and Create. Supported by ART: 2016, the Arts Council's programme as part of Ireland 2016, the centenary of the Easter Rising in the Republic of Ireland, Dublin City Council and Heart of Glass (St. Helen’s).