Le prix d’être une femme.

‘Le prix d’être une femme’ speaks about beeing a
It’s taken from my personal experience. I am
highlighting the constant insecurities and
fears we may have within us. I want to speak
about the right that a lot of men take, as they
raised in the patriarchal system believing we, as
womxn owe them. It is very interesting to have
a look at the male gaze, at toxic masculinity, and
see what comes out of it. The ways men allow
themselves to look at womxn, cat-call them, grab
them. Although we might not speak about it
all the time, and we walk on and pretend it isn’t
happening it is absolutely integrated into our daily
lives and all around us. How many times have I
been catcalled, or grabbed, I didn’t do anything,
I wasn’t dressed in a provocative way, I didn’t
provoke. The womxn has to consider not only
her sexuality but also the impact her existence
will have on the male’s sexuality – The fashioned
body, 2015, Entwistle.
This work is around a journal extract from last
summer. Making a female body in a textile
structure, in a fetal position, displayed on
the floor. After elimination and research on
processes and materials, I chose to use lace and
© Rosalie Oakman

Le prix d’être une femme
I do not live in Paris anymore. It means I can’t
stay out; I need to go home.
‘Come on, just one last drink. You know what?
You can stay at mine. Don’t worry. Stay, drink,
let’s have some fun.’
‘Which motorbike are we riding on? Are you
sure it’s safe? Haven’t we drunk too much?
Okay then.’
[more drinking] ‘I am tired, where can I sleep?
Are you sure I can take your bed? I really don’t
mind if you sleep next to me, you’re my friend
after all.’ […]
‘Guys, stop fighting, it’s silly and meaningless
… There are things far worse and more
important than what you are currently fighting
about. ‘[falls back to sleep]
I am so thirsty, goes to the bathroom and
drinks water from the tap. [ goes back to bed.]
He moves closer to me. Sleeping […] it’s okay.
[his hands move closer to me]
‘Please stop’ [falls back to sleep.] his hands
move closer to me, and he starts grabbing
my body.
‘Please stop. Please. I am trying to sleep.’ [He
removes his hands.]
I am feeling tired, but I can’t sleep anymore.
I am scared he will try to touch me again. I
am feeling ill. Why am I even polite when I am
asking him to stop? I shouldn’t be. […]
I think I am going to throw up. […] I need water.
[Goes to the bathroom, drinks from the tap.]
I don’t want to go back there. I am feeling
feverish. […] I am. [vomits in the toilet.]
Fever. Warm. Unwell. Uncomfortable. […]
the cold tiles. The carpet. [lies on the floor].
Why? Why? Why? I don’t want to go in there.
[…] I am so tired. […] the carpet isn’t that bad.
Maybe I can stay here until morning. […]
Fever. The cold floor. Dizziness. The cold floor.
[falls asleep.] Finally.
[…] I am cold. [Goes back to bed.]
‘Where did you go?’
‘I wasn’t feeling too well, went for water. I
thought of my next piece of art. I don’t know
what it will be yet, but it will be called ‘ le prix
d’être une femme ‘.’ […]
‘Don’t mention to M you slept here. ‘ […]
Isn’t it weird he said that? […] I thought he was
my friend.

  • June 2020, journal extract,
    Rosalie Oakman, 2021
‘Le prix d’être une femme’, 2021. Credit Rosalie Oakman / Photographer Nicole Ngaise