Meet Skye Lucas and Ariel Deutsch, two seniors from different NYC high schools, who became fast friends through their mutual interest in feminism, activism, and women’s history. After hearing about the #MonumentalWomen campaign from the Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony Statue Fund, a non-profit, all-volunteer organization dedicated to creating and placing the first statue honoring real women in New York City’s Central Park, the two students turned filmmakers teamed up to raise awareness of this historic endeavor by shining a giant spotlight on “the unnoticed, yet blatant inequity” in the famed park.
Armed with video equipment and a microphone, Skye and Ariel spent a day filming and interviewing park-goers, both locals and visitors. Their mission was to get people’s candid reactions to the fact that there are 23 statues of historical figures in Central Park, but not one honors a real woman.
There are 23 statues of historical figures in Central Park, but not one honors a real woman.
Skye shared with us that one of the interviews really stuck with her. “When we revealed this sad truth to a father, his daughter and son, the young girl grew immediately upset and the young boy seemed confused.” She added, “Witnessing the reaction of these kids was powerful. It made us reflect on how we would have felt at their age hearing the same information.”
For Ariel, the project – from filming through editing – offered reassuring proof that “the women’s movement today is being embraced and carried forward by a new wave of activists of all ages, genders and ethnic diversity.”
In the end, after two long, but inspiring days of filming and editing, these two young women created something truly powerful that not only raises awareness of the #MonumentalWomen campaign, but that ultimately helps to “celebrate the women who paved the way for social equality and, along the way, made major contributions to everything from science to the arts.”
Our special thanks to Ariel and Skye for being the powerful voices of the next generation of women leaders and change makers who will take us into the future. For more information and to contribute to the #MonumentalWomen campaign, visit monumentalwomen.org