The Violence Against Women (VAW) Art Map was conceived in the fall of 2018, in the wake of the #MeToo movement by Lauren Stetz, a Ph.D. candidate in Art Education with a minor in at Penn State University. Inspired by the globality of the hashtag movement, Stetz became fascinated by its unique manifestations in different geographic locations, questioning how the universal language of hashtags interacts with complex histories of oppression. Drawing from transnational and intersectional feminisms, Stetz queries the nuances of violence across borders, boundaries, and identity.
The VAW Art Map can be used to visualize connections between artists globally, highlighting themes such as vulnerability, shame and victim-blaming, and law and government. The VAW Art
Incorporate the Violence Against Women (VAW) Art Map into your classroom curriculum. The lessons provided can be easily scaffolded to meet the needs of a wide range of learners. Please contact us at with any questions you have regarding implementation in your classroom!
Lessons are currently available in English, Japanese and French. Translations courtesy of students Alexandra Clayton, Rose Donaldson, and Kaz Hirata of Dr. Lindsay Mayka's "Social Movements" course at Colby College.
"You don't always have to be stuck in the darkness. My artwork reflects the thriving aspect of my journey as of survivor."
- Ewa Grochowska
Artist and Domestic Violence Survivor
"Women pretend that everything is fine, but it's not fine."
- Silvia Levenson
"My mission is for survivors to feel all the things society doesn't allow them to feel- seen, believed, validated and understood."
- Natalie Pattillo
and Domestic Violence Survivor
Art for Healing and Activism
Level: Grades 7-12
Explore the work of Polish American artist and domestic violence survivor Ewa Grochowska to learn how she uses art for healing and social change. (BELOW: Close-up of Burn, 2017, by Ewa Grochowska)
Level: Grades 7-12
Using the work of Argentinian Italian artist Natalia Saurin, explore relationship dynamics and the way passion can be used to justify dangerous behavior. (BELOW: Close-up of Ti Amo Troppo, 2020, by Natalia Saurin)
Art Education Dialogues: Navigating Themes
Level: Higher Education
Using the VAW Art Map, explore themes depicted by artists address violence against women. Consider how educators might utilize VAW artworks to address violence against women through curriculum design. Discuss censorship in art education. (BELOW: Close-up of Tea time is back I by Silvia Levenson, 2019, Marco Del Comune Photographer)