Björk Slams Media Sexism in Powerful Open Letter

After seeing comments about her DJ sets at Day For Night.

By Noah Yoo.

Björk has penned a lengthy open letter addressed to the media about the sexism that she and other female artists face in how their art and performances are received. Following her DJ sets at Day For Night Festival in Houston, Björk says she saw media critiques that she was “not ‘performing’ and ‘hiding’ behind desks,” a critique that she found sexist as other DJs did not receive the same. “I am aware of that it is less [than] a year since I started DJing publicly so this is something people are still getting used to and my fans have been incredibly welcoming to me sharing my musical journey and letting me be me,” she wrote. “Women in music are allowed to be singer songwriters singing about their boyfriends. If they change the subject matter to atoms, galaxies, activism, nerdy math beat editing or anything else than being performers singing about their loved ones, they get criticized; journalists feel there is just something missing ... as if our only lingo is emo...”

She then goes on to explain that her albums Volta and Biophilia were written “conscious of the fact that these were not subjects females usually write about,” but it wasn’t until Vulnicura that the media embraced her. “Men are allowed to go from subject to subject, do sci-fi, period pieces, be slapstick and humorous, be music nerds getting lost in sculpting soundscapes, but not women. If we don’t cut our chest open and bleed about the men and children in our lives, we are cheating our audience.”

Björk closes the letter by explaining that she hopes with her next work, she will “get to have a costume change and walk out of this role” that she created for herself by singing about “a classic female subject matter: the heartbreak” on Vulnicura. She closes with: “Let’s make 2017 the year where we fully make the transformation!!! The right to variety for all the girls out there!!!” Check out the full note here.

This story originally appeared on Pitchfork.

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