Clare Gallagher:

The Second Shift

Photo: Clare Gallagher

Clare Gallagher:

The Second Shift

The Finnish Museum of Photography
Project Space

The Cable Factory, Tallberginkatu 1 G, 00180 Helsinki

16.10.–22.11.2020
‘I hate housework! You make the beds, you do the dishes – and six months later you have to start all over again.’ -Joan Rivers

The Second Shift is the hidden shift of housework and childcare primarily carried out by women on top of their paid employment. It is physical, mental and emotional labour which demands effort, skill and time but is unpaid, unaccounted for, unequally distributed and largely unrecognised. 

This experience of performing two work shifts daily, one during their ‘leisure’ hours, is that of the majority of working women. It also implies a hierarchy: that some people's time matters more than others. Hidden in plain sight and veiled by familiarity and insignificance, the second shift is largely absent from photographs of home and family. Clare Gallagher’s work is an attempt to recognise the complexity and value of this invisible work. It is a call for resistance to the patriarchal and aesthetic systems which ignore it. 

“I am a lecturer, artist, researcher and mother of two teenaged sons. I started researching home in the late 2000s, as the exhaustion and delirium of mothering babies and toddlers gave way to bewilderment and frustration at the gendering of my time and opportunities in ways I had not been prepared for. In my mixed-gender state school, girls went on to study engineering, medicine and law in the same proportions as the boys did. Thinking the feminist battle had been won in the 1970s, we set out with expectations of equality. Where did all the promises of parity go? Of shared parenting? If we had still managed to retain the belief in gender equality in the workforce, parenthood rapidly revealed it to be an illusion.”

Clare Gallagher (s. 1978) is a Northern Irish artist whose work focuses on the ordinary, everyday practices of life at home. Gallagher also teaches on the BA and MFA programmes at the Belfast School of Art.

The Finnish Museum of Photography
Project Space

The Cable Factory, Tallberginkatu 1 G, 00180 Helsinki

16.10.–22.11.2020
Address
The Cable Factory
Tallberginkatu 1 G, 00180 Helsinki
Opening hours
Tue–Sun 11 am. – 6 pm. Wed 11 am – 8 pm
Tickets
10/5/0 €
Museokortti
Under 18 y.o. free admission
Address
Kämp Galleria
Pohjoisesplanadi 33, 00100 Helsinki
Opening hours
Mon–Sun 11 am – 8pm
Tickets
12/6/0 €
Museokortti
Under 18 y.o. free admission