Ross-on-Wye photographer, Caz Holbrook, was so intrigued by the plan to mark the 100th anniversary of women obtaining the right be MPs, with an exhibition of portraits of the 209 current female MPs, she volunteered to take part.
One hundred years after women first gained the right to sit in Parliament as MPs, the Speaker’s Advisory Committee on Works of Art is hosting the ‘209 Women’ exhibition . Unveiled in time for the anniversary of the first election where some women could cast a vote, the exhibition includes portraits of all the current female MPs, all photographed by female photographers in an all-female initiative.
Caz photographed Wera Hobhouse MP for Bath, who she greatly admires. Caz told the Ross Gazette: “She is a Remainer like me and she was also responsible for getting the laws about up-skirting introduced in parliament.” However, Caz explained that the exhibition itself is non-political. Her main interest was in showing the rise in the number of female photographers and that they can now compete equally with their male counterparts. She said; “Times have changed since I first became a photographer and set up my own business in Ross after college. I felt this was a very important project to be part of.”
209 Women marks several significant anniversaries, February 6th, 2018 marked exactly 100 years since the Representation of the People Act, with Parliament starting a year-long series of events and exhibitions commemorating the women and men who fought to achieve electoral equality.
November 21st, 2018 marked 100 years since the passing of the Parliament (Qualification of Women) Act, which allowed women over 21 to become MPs on equal terms as men for the first time. The third centenary fell on December 14th, 2018 when some women over 30 and all men over 21 were able to cast their first vote in the General Election of 1918.
The exhibition will be displayed at Portcullis House until February 14th and free tickets are available at visit.parliament.uk The exhibition will then travel to the Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool.
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