The Shape of History

The Shape of History, Courageous Studios and UM / Hulu
In 2017, The Handmaid’s Tale’s themes of gender injustice resonated with an American public eager for social change.

But while the show had raised awareness of female repression, little had changed and by 2019, supporters were losing hope.

To make season three a success, we needed to deliver ACTION for women’s rights – while raising awareness of the season premiere.

A key theme in the show is that “History is written by those who tell it”.

While exploring this theme, we realized only 8% of all statues in the US are of women. In New York City, the numbers were worse: 145 statues of men, but just five women.

Public symbols have the power to energize the masses, but America’s inspirational women were being forgotten.

While we couldn’t change history, we could give women the chance to see a new future – with them in it.

For one day, the week of The Handmaid’s Tale season three premiere, we placed 140 female statues in NYC – to equal the existing 145 of men.

The statues were mirrors, meaning that, for the first time, women could see someone like themselves reflected in a statue – a symbolic gesture designed to inspire them to take ACTION.