Playing The Woman (Post)Card
By Alixandra Rutnik on Oct 14, 2020
Maddy Kramer and Mica Gallino give homage to influential women with The Woman Postcard
It all started with The Woman Card, which then led to the creation of The Woman Postcard. Maddy Kramer and Mica Gallino– two Next Creative Leaders winners and Art Directors– are the motivated women behind these cohesive projects. Whether you are playing a card game or sending a postcard to a friend, these special edition “cards” have the power to educate and inspire you about women of our past and of our present. We had the opportunity to chat with Maddy and Mica to learn more about both The Woman Card and The Woman Postcard too.
The Woman Card came first… what made you decide to create The Woman Postcard next?
Maddy: The Woman Card was created in 2016 after the allegations of Donald Trump saying to Hillary Clinton that she had the Woman Card. The idea for this project is to celebrate every queen that shaped our society to be better, more inclusive, and pave the path for the ones that came after them. We wanted to respond to Trump’s comment by making him the joker and give back to gender equality.
This year together with Mica we created the second version The Woman Postcard– postcards that celebrate the 100 years since the 19th amendment. Each postcard celebrates a woman by giving a nod to the suffragists that fought for our rights using the distinctive white clothes. While releasing the new version, the USPS was getting compromised and making it harder for people to vote, so we decided to be proactive and use these postcards to help the USPS and fight for our right to vote.
In the digital age, postcards and playing cards feel very old-school, what made you decide to highlight women in this particular way?
Maddy: There’s something about a physical product that a digital product can’t give you– some attachment of appreciation to the art that was created by so many different artists who have the same goal– fighting for equality. When you have the deck of cards or the postcards in your work desk you are reminded that there’s still so much to do and we all have the responsibility to keep teaching the new generations who these women were and are today. Most of these women are not even in any history books.
Mica: Both the deck of cards and the postcards share something very unique, you need someone else to play with or to write to and we feel that that is essential to the project. We want these cards and postcards to be moving around, creating conversations about the untold stories of these amazing women and empowering new ones to come.
"When you have the deck of cards or the postcards in your work desk you are reminded that there’s still so much to do and we all have the responsibility to keep teaching the new generations who these women were and are today."
Is it the same 54 women in each deck of cards?
Maddy: In the new deck we kept some of the icons that we felt needed to be re-featured such as Hilary Clinton, RBG, Madonna, etc. In the new deck, you can find some key women that we were missing in the old deck such as Susan B. Anthony and the fearless AOC.
Talk to us about the Student Workshop section on your website. What is the story behind these workshops?
Maddy: When we launched the deck in 2016 a teacher in Uruguay approached me to give the chance to their students to contribute to the deck. We loved the idea so we collaborated on it and the best ones made it in the deck. We would love to bring the workshops to middle and high school students as part of an educational program.
How did you decide which women you wanted to represent on these postcards?
Maddy: We invite anyone who wants to participate– the more the merrier! A lot of friends of friends loved the idea and wanted to collaborate. Also, I’m a bit of a go-getter so I emailed a lot of people to tell them that I love their style and I invited them to be part of the project. We gave them guidelines, but we love having an array of different styles because that is what makes the deck of cards and postcards so unique.
Mica: It was also very important for us to give each illustrator the opportunity to honor someone that truly resonated with them, so we made the whole list of women available for everyone. We also got to illustrate people that we admire as well, Maddy paid homage to Hillary Clinton and Aretha Franklin and I was thrilled to portray AOC.
What are you hoping women will take from both your playing cards and your postcards?
Maddy: For every deck sold we donate the money to gender equality, so at the end we want to help make the world more equal. We want the world to know that there are all these amazing women that are not featured in our history books that we need to know about and hopefully the next generation will be more educated than we ever were.
I think with the postcards we wanted to defend our democracy, our right to vote, and all that these women did for us. As women, I think we have a responsibility to show up and continue doing the work.
Mica: Inspiration and awareness! By shedding a light on the stories of those feminists that throughout history have fought to achieve gender equality for all of us, we are bringing to the surface the lack of privileges and disadvantages that we’ve faced since the beginning of times. It is only thanks to them that today we can vote, go to college, own property, marry who we want, decide about our bodies, and even run for office. Sharing and learning about their stories should inspire all of us to keep up the fight.
"By shedding a light on the stories of those feminists that throughout history have fought to achieve gender equality for all of us, we are bringing to the surface the lack of privileges and disadvantages that we’ve faced since the beginning of times."
How are you hoping The Woman Card ties into the 2020 Presidential Election?
Maddy: Now more than ever we need to use our power to fight for our rights. We are living in scary times, just to think that one person can strip away so many rights that women fought for over generations is terrifying. I say let’s go use our Woman Card and prove how we keep showing up to make a change.
"I say let’s go use our Woman Card and prove how we keep showing up to make a change."
Mica: After a year full of excitement about the diversity of the candidates in a race that included a record number of women of color it is sad to not see a female contender on the presidential debate stage, but this shouldn’t stop us. The woman card is a reminder that although our ideas have been greatly underrepresented, we have stayed strong and kept fighting for our rights. This is no time to stop, so let's keep it up.
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