Davos Collage Spoofs Old Boy Conclave, Lack of Women

Gender equality? Not at Davos, as a pop poster makes colorfully clear.

Klaus Schwab, chairman of the World Economic Forum which starts meeting on Jan. 23 in the Swiss ski resort, looks old and lonely, his balding pate squeezed between the coiffed heads of Pepsi Inc. Chief Executive Indra Nooyi and TV goddess Oprah Winfrey.

The creation of the Itinerant Museum of Art, the poster designed by Fernando Morales-de la Cruz and Cornelia Vinzens imagines a world in which female decision-makers outnumber men by four to one.

In all, there are 18 high-powered women and a puny four men in a brightly colored Andy Warhol-style collage called “Gender Equality? Reverse Reality.”

“When we show this poster to men, they understand that it looks like a meeting of women in which the men are being unfairly treated,” Morales-de la Cruz said by telephone from Strasbourg, where he lives.

“The reverse reality makes it clear that we are wholly unfair to half the world’s population. We have to accept that human rights include gender equality.”

Morales-de la Cruz and Vinzens published the image in the local Davos newspaper “Gipfel” during last year’s conference, where more than 80 percent of the delegates were male, and displayed the posters in an art gallery and in shop windows.

Like Last Year

“In 2013, it won’t be much different,” Morales-de la Cruz said. “We can’t continue discussing issues like that, with men in the majority when it comes to women’s issues.”

A survey conducted by the WEF and published in October showed that women have gained little ground in political leadership around the world, with men still occupying about 80 percent of key elected and appointed positions.

About 17 percent of the official participants at the conference this year are women, according to the World Economic Forum.

A Guatemalan and the father of two girls, Morales-de la Cruz said he plans to expand his campaign by presenting his art initiative at transportation hubs and on the facades of key public buildings in major cities around the world.

Muse highlights include Scott Reyburn on the art market, Jason Harper on cars, Rich Jaroslovsky on technology and Lance Esplund on U.S. art.

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