Art With a Purpose: End Rape 

By Citlalli LunaFebruary 2, 2012Edúcate

Art is a form of expression that can take many shapes to either entertain or educate. In the case of Artist Suzanne Lacy, it’s the best way to change the world.

Three Weeks in January” is a public artwork with a purpose to raise awareness about the number of reported rapes and sexual assaults in the city of Los Angeles. Created by artist Suzanne Lacy, the Los Angeles Rape Map is the hallmark of this artwork, installed at Deaton Auditorium in front of the Los Angeles Police Department in Downtown LA.

The map marks the location of the crimes that took place from January 9 to February 1, 2012 with the word “RAPE” in red, stenciled letters. The locations were gathered from police reports of the previous day, which are public record.

According to the project’s Twitter account, @3WeeksInJan, a total of 55 rape reports were marked on the LA Rape Map for the past three weeks. This artwork is based on Lacy’s famous 1977 project “Three Weeks in May” which combined performance art with activism.

“Three Weeks in January” has been successful in placing rape statistics in the public’s view 
and is part of the Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival. Although the last day of the exhibit was February 1st, you can take part in the ongoing battle to end rape by taking part in social movements organized in your local community.

Here’s a video with Suzanne Lacy talking about what triggered her “Three Weeks in May” project in which she also addresses the way people, police and the media dealt with rape in the 70’s.

Facts about rape

  • Most rapes happen by someone the victim knows.
  • Every 2 minutes, someone in the U.S.A. is sexually assaulted.
  • Rape affects everyone.