Press release - Screening of artwork to celebrate childbirth 

Warm Wet Velvet by Dominika Dzikowska photographic lambada print 50 x 70cm mounted on 1cm board. 2009 - 2013. 
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Birth Rites Collection News Release : 25th january 2013

The shortlisted entries for the Birth Rites Collection’s bi-annual art prize will be showcased at the University of Salford’s MediaCityUK campus on Saturday 2 February.
The Birth Rites Collection was established by Helen Knowles, an artist and curator who aims to encourage a wider debate about the politics and practice of childbirth through the use of art. It was inspired by Helen’s contrasting experiences of giving birth to her first child in a hospital by cesarean and her second born at home.
The exhibition at MediaCityUK will feature the drawings, films, photographs and sculptures of 15 shortlisted artists from all over the world. The prize is a month at artistic retreat The Trelex Residency in Geneva (including the cost of flights and a stipend) plus a place in the Birth Rites Collection.
The short-listed artworks include Emma Lazenby’s BAFTA-winning short animation about a midwife, Mother of Many, photographs of women's faces at the moment of birth by Dominika Dzikowska, "illegitimate hallucinations", by Giorgio Sadotti and YouTube videos of childbirth flanked by photographs of people watching them by Claire Lawrie. 
The winner of the competition will be announced at the event by curator Helen Knowles and fellow judge Hermione Wiltshire, an artist and senior lecturer in photography at the Royal College of Art.
Helen said: “The taboo and under-represented subject of birth has been shown to be of great importance as a topic for artists to explore. We have had a great number of excellent submissions to the competition and this show presents a broad spectrum of works which were found to be the most poignant. Imagery on this fundamental life-process is a great way for people to get to grips with what it means to give birth today. 
The Birth Rites Collection is housed at the University of Salford in the midwifery department and the Royal College of Gynaecologists and Obstetricians in London.
Birth Rites, Saturday 2 February, 11.00am – 5.00pm, The Egg, University of Salford, MediaCityUK. Prize to be awarded at 2pm.


Formations 4 Seeds by Valerie Schmidt. Light jet c-type print 40 x 50cm 

Notes to editors:
Helen Knowles can be contacted on 07891 256 318

Full list of exhibiting artists are ;

Carlos Zapata

Clair Graubner

Claire Lawrie

Dominika Dzikowska

Emma Lazenby

Flora Maeve Parrot

Giorgio Sadotti

Mary Courtney

Mercedes Ferrari

Rachel Emily Taylor

Rose Gibbs

Shirley Chubb

Sarah Goudie

Tabitha Moses

Valerie Schmidt


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