“A lot of misogynist press has taught us to scorn feminism and relegate it to the past. In fact there’s so much more: we’re just at the tip of the iceberg in what has been addressed in terms of re-imagining a less patriarchal, a less misogynistic way to structure our world, societies, communities, political and spiritual systems. Whereas all the systems that we have seem to be neutral, in fact they are gender-biased; they were all established by men and they’re all patriarchal systems, they’re all hierarchal systems. It’s not that there's nothing good that could be gleaned from that, but we are at the point now where we’re expecting nature to collapse within a century. It occurred to me in the last year that people can more easily imagine the apocalypse that religions have been preparing their members for for the last 2000 years, than they can imagine a subtle shift in our systems of governance towards more feminist systems.
I have no hope that men can resolve the crisis that we’re facing now. Men can participate, men can draw upon feminine resources inside themselves, but it is for women to gain the empowerment necessary to participate so vigorously and internationally to create that change, I think they’re really our last hope. It's the great untouched resource of the world; it's half the population and if we organised ourselves differently, it could be instantly reformative.”
"Men can participate, men can draw upon feminine resources inside themselves, but it is for women to gain the empowerment necessary to participate so vigorously and internationally to create that change, I think they’re really our last hope"
Antony Hegarty is an English singer, composer and visual artist, best known as the lead singer of Antony and the Johnsons. On August 6 the band will release Cut the World, made up of symphonic versions of songs primarily from the band’s four full-length studio albums, recorded last September in Copenhagen with the Danish National Chamber Orchestra. Featured on the record is the track Future Feminism, a speech made by Hegarty promoting a shift a way from patriarchy and toward a more feminine mode of global governance – something which the mesmeric singer has been emphatically encouraging people to actively participate in over the past years.
The beginning of August will also see Hegarty curate the annual Meltdown Festival at the Southbank Centre in London featuring a “constellation of artists” he greatly admires and whom he sees as part of the greater movement of “future feminism”. Ranging from Kembra Pfahler, who fronts glam-punk band Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, “one of the most important artists from New York City – really very special, so courageous, confrontational and intensely beautiful: the most hardcore future feminist”, to longstanding collaborator Marina Abramović who, after being presented with the idea by Hegarty, is doing a lecture just for women.
Anthony and the Johnsons: Cut the World is released on August 6 on Rough Trade Records. Antony’s Meltdown runs August 1 – 12 at Southbank Centre.
Text by Lucia Davies