FRANCIS AUGUSTO

#WhoWeAreProject is an on-going visual series born out of a wanting to encourage understanding and provoke open dialogue about human identity and experience. I have created two interactions, with the second manifesting into a motion picture piece in collaboration with The Ministry, thank you Rachel Peplow.  Thank you to all participants who gave up their time to be involved.


For the short film: https://vimeo.com/322227023

What women do you draw your power from, who inspires you?


"What women do I draw my power from? I have been really really fortunate to be around lots of really powerful women actually. So my mum is one of six girls, there are also brothers there as well, but they weren’t really in the picture, they were all in Jamaica and so all my aunts are super super fierce, got their own businesses and some of them are single parents and just done the most amazing job. That’s further compounded in many ways the difficulties because they’re also women of colour and the fact that they’ve learnt how to navigate through a space where they are a minority and obviously being of a completely different generation I just think it’s incredible. And in my professional life I suppose my ex boss Victoria Fox she was the CEO of one of the largest companies. She was the global diversity sponsor for this massive Advertising group that I work for and she worked a four day week, and she had two small kids and just inspirational on so many levels. Completely kicking to boot that really archaic, industrial revolution throwback where actually we need to be working five days a week. She just completely switched it up and she worked remotely, flexibly, part time."

Sereena

What does it mean to you to be a woman?


"Things have really changed now, it’s harder to differentiate I think personally between what it is to be a man and what it means to be a woman. I don’t see why we can’t do the same things as men and why we shouldn’t do the same things as men. so I think it’s harder to say oh for me a woman means being powerful or being feminine or this because I think it’s the same that it should mean for a man."

Katy

What does it mean to be a woman?


"To be a woman means so many powerful things. It’s an embodiment of strength, both in physical terms and emotional terms and in terms of our own character and the depth that we have. Being a woman in this day and age is tough because there’s a lot of crap. There’s a lot of everything that kinda gets thrown at us. To be a woman - should be - to be the same as a man. You know, we’re all human, it’s all about equality but unfortunately that’s not the case. But to me, being a woman is just badass power and how to harness that power and how to stop all the shit that’s going on, which is, a lot easier said than done, but it starts with us being together, supporting each other and staying strong."

Shivani

What does it mean to be a woman?


Hmm, now I’ve said something and now I want to say something different. To be a woman is to feel like you’re part a gang. As a woman, I feel less isolated than from what I’ve spoken to men, what being a man is like, and that in a way - is being a woman always in contrast to what being a man is? I don’t know. But I feel supported and united, that’s what it feels like to be a woman.

Flora

How would you define femininity?


"I'd say for me femininity is through like expression of clothes or for example my art and even the way I decorate myself with tattoos and stuff and express my femininity in those ways, but I also realise that over the years for example I do not enjoy wearing makeup on a day to day basis and I just would prefer to avoid it altogether, but that's still my own expression of femininity and how I choose to empower myself in that way, so yeah, I don't think there's one set way to go about it, but yeah it's really interesting to see how different people express it and what you can gain and learn from them."

Smera

What does equality mean to you?


Equality means the equal treatment of both men and women or like everyone in general and I think, I prefer the term equality rather than feminism, even though they technically mean the same thing, but I do like the term equality better because there are not as many stigmas attached to it and I think the word - equality having the word equal in it says a lot about what it should be.

Mildred

What is equality?


"Equality, ok, this is going to be difficult - not difficult - equality is just, it's simply looking at a person for who they are, it doesn't matter you've made in your life, how much money you've got, where you live, how many children you have, equality is looking at the person for themselves, for their face value, for they are in the moment. Um, and I think that everyone should be treated respectively, should be treated for how they are, not necessarily what gender they are or anything like that, that's what I think yeah"


Milly

Who were the key female figures in your life growing up?

Definitely my mum and sisters. I grew up in a house with my mum, my dad and three sisters and just the kind of person my dad is he definitely embraces his feminine side. He’s not a macho kind of guy. He wasn’t that kind of role model. He was very much balanced and taught us from an early age how important it is to not only realise that everyone is equal but show that in your behaviour when you speak to people. My entire family, my immediate family taught me what it means to be a woman and why that should be embraced and celebrated and respected and loved and what value that comes from it.
Prask Sutton

What does it mean to be a woman?


Wow, what a question! What does it mean to be a woman? To be a woman it means a lot of things it means we are multi-faceted beings, we are passionate, we are ambitious, we are driven, we are caring. We are the bearers of children, we are the careers of the elderly. Being a woman it’s so much more than just your gender, it’s about how you behave in the world. It’s about how you walk, how you hold yourself, how you protect the younger, how you open doors for those to come up in their career and I think that’s what being is a woman is to me. It’s being a multi-faceted human, with so many skills and yet such a softer side I would say, an understanding side and that’s what it is for me to be a woman.

Samira
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