Georgie White Winter

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Artist Statement ‘Old Wives’ Tales Pregnancy Myth’

This series is a tongue in cheek look at Old Wives’ Tales and when I became pregnant the second time I decided I wanted to play with the idea of myths. Often regarded as irrational, illogical and absurd stories that over the passing of time have become more of a fanciful saying than anything of truth. The Oxford dictionary understands the term Old Wives’ Tale as ‘an old idea or belief that people now know is not correct’, but are we too quick to write off the term as foolish stories told by senile women? 

Interestingly, and perhaps unsurprisingly, what I discovered with the traditional Old Wives’ Tales was the ingrained prejudice against women. The outlook of the myths hint at the desire to bear a cherished baby boy and not another ghastly girl. The traits to carry a boy are kinder to the mother's figure and fatigue, whereas there is abrasive contempt in birthing a little girl who will give you a hideous shaped bump, cover you with spots, greasy hair or baldness and even riddle you with indigestion. Playing with the theme I created my own pregnancy Old Wives’ Tales which emphasise the inequality in the result.

Georgie White Winter is an artist and educator based in London. Previous projects have taken her to explore British folklore & traditions through photography. She recently completed a series of projects studying female clowns, morris dancers & British performers. Trained in fine art photography at the London College of Communication Georgie has explored creating works using papier-mâché, cardboard sculptors and more recently craft and needle work. Completing a Master’s in History of Photography at Birkbeck, University of London Georgie also teaches photography for undergraduates and delivers workshops for adult learning. 

Currently Georgie is creating work around the subject of motherhood, pregnancy and the body. She is also a co-founder of the artist platform HEWING WITTARE who aim to develop an artist's work in an increasingly challenging city to practice in and enable them to exhibit in unusual places.

Pregnancy Myth, series 2, 2020 - #7: Old Wives Tales (Boy or Girl) Balance a raw cauliflower on your pregnant belly and if baby starts kicking enough to push the cauliflower off then it's definitely a strong and feisty boy. No kicking then it's a lazy, lethargic girl. Verdict - Inconclusive
Pregnancy Myth, series 2, 2020 - #1: Old Wives Tales (Boy or Girl) Balance one ripe pineapple on your head, count to 20, still safely on your head then you're having a boy. Verdict - Definitely a Girl
Pregnancy Myth, series 2, 2020 - #2: Old Wives Tales (Boy or Girl) Eat a carrot and if it gives you hiccups then you are expecting a girl. Verdict - Must be a Boy
Pregnancy Myth, series 2, 2020 - #4: Old Wives Tales (Boy or Girl) Put a lock of your hair in a glass of whole milk, swill it around for 3 minutes. If it turns sour then it's a girl. Verdict - It's gonna be a Boy
Pregnancy Myth, series 2, 2020 - #8: Old Wives Tales (Boy or Girl) Melt an ice cube in your hand, if you get a warm sensation in your little finger then it's a boy. Cold uncomfortable feelings in your toes then it's a girl. Verdict - Another inconclusive result

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