A CONFLICT OF INTERESTS
by Lauren McLaughlin
A neon sign that is programmed to flash on and off consecutively between the four words; 'Mother' 'other' 'her' and 'Me'. The artwork plays on the multifaceted identities and roles women are expected to simultaneously hold as mothers, and the challenges of having to do and be everything at once. Mothering is a verb and everyone has the capacity to mother regardless of gender, yet it is a role that mainly still falls to women. In order to achieve equality for all, the unpaid labour of mothering and caring work must be distributed between all genders and must be equally valued within our capitalist society. More and more women and non-binary people of younger generations are deciding not to become mothers at all and right-wing capitalist leaders have responded to the trend by stripping away reproductive rights. Everyone should be able to choose whether or not they become mothers, and for those who do decide to take on the role of raising the next generation, they need access to economic, social and environmental support structures to ensure that all parents are treated as equal members of society.
Lauren McLaughlin is a multidisciplinary artist whose focus is rooted in a desire to represent the undervalued and overlooked experiences of mothering, caregiving, and gendered work through a feminist lens.