Women’s Art Exhibit Featuring Detransitioner Portraits Vandalized in San Francisco
Women’s sex-based rights advocates face threats and aggression, necessitating large police presence, culminating in an arrest.
A San Francisco art exhibit dedicated to female artists was marred by vandalism last weekend, marking yet another chapter in the ongoing discourse surrounding gender ideology and free speech.
Titled “A Nasty Piece of Work: The Art of Dissident Feminists,” the exhibit showcased the works of 13 female artists, including a self-portrait by detransitioner Laura Becker and a series of paintings depicting other detransitioners. The event drew approximately 100 attendees on its opening night.
On Sunday morning, attendees discovered the venue’s windows had been vandalized with red spray paint, spelling out: “NO TERFS ON OUR TURF!” Alongside the aggressive message was the emblematic anarchy symbol often associated with Antifa.
The exhibition was organized by Women Are Real, a non-partisan organization championing women’s sex-based rights. It coincided with a conference organized by Women’s Declaration International USA at the Hilton Hotel, situated in San Francisco’s bustling financial district.
A post on IndyBay, a publishing collective affiliated with the San Francisco Bay Area’s Independent Media Center and utilized by the far-Left, claimed they were responsible for vandalizing the women’s art exhibit. Notably, IndyBay allows for anonymous contributions, making it a hub for organizing protests. In the aftermath of the protest, the site saw a surge in related posts.
A group dubbing itself the “Banko Revenge Brigade” claimed not only the defacement of the art exhibit but also vandalism at several San Francisco Walgreens locations. Their scathing post, uploaded on Sunday afternoon, berated numerous San Francisco transgender political figures for what they saw as a lack of radical fervor. Their aggressive message ended ominously with: “watch your backs.” The post was punctuated with a nighttime snapshot of their handiwork.
An anonymous representative from Women Are Real expressed their sadness at the incident, confirming that a police report was filed and estimating the cost of graffiti removal at around $500. “Given the violence and damage at the Hilton Hotel earlier, I was not shocked by the vandalism at the gallery,” the representative said.
Footage and images from Saturday captured the scene of approximately 100 protesters surrounding the Hilton, chanting and waving signs with aggressive messages. The visuals showcased additional incidents of property damage and graffiti on the Hilton Hotel sign, ultimately leading to the arrest of Casey Goonan, a 33-year-old resident of Oakland. Goonan now faces charges on two counts of felony vandalism and resisting arrest, which resulted in non-life threatening injuries to two officers.
In the midst of the afternoon’s events, tensions peaked when attendees, assuming they were safe on the hotel’s terrace bridge, were met with an unexpected security breach. Journalist Meghan Murphy, who has witnessed protests at numerous events where she’s spoken, faced her closest encounter with danger. Murphy, alongside K. Yang, another speaker, was filming the ongoing protests from the bridge when they were ambushed by a group of activists.
This group, consisting of approximately five men and one individual in feminine attire—all in black—seemingly appeared from a closed gate connected to the Chinese Cultural Center. The alarming situation was captured on video, showing an altercation where a person attempting to intercept the activists was thrown to the ground.
Murphy, visibly shaken, can be seen rushing inside the hotel for safety. She had planned to attend the art exhibit’s opening night, but after the day’s stressful events, decided against it due to safety concerns.
Acceleration Space, the venue hosting the exhibit, says on their website that it aims to showcase the art of women who oppose “the quest to construct or remake what it means to be a woman.”
Detransitioner Laura Becker’s self-portrait, “Grace,” stands out: a black and white photo where acrylic paint and gold leaf mask her double mastectomy scars. The artwork’s description reads as a poignant reminder: “Grace is a confrontational case study of the medical trauma faced by survivors of the gender transition industry.”
At 19, Becker was prescribed testosterone on her first visit to a gender clinic, even after disclosing her autism diagnosis, substance abuse, and suicidal ideation. Just six months later she underwent a double mastectomy, removing her healthy breasts. Two years afterward a PTSD diagnosis provided clarity on her experiences, leading her to detransition. Now 26, Becker travels globally, sharing her story at events with the hope of supporting and guiding others.
Art created by detransitioner Exulansic was also on display in the exhibit. The piece, called "Pandemic Mood," pays tribute to a close friend of Exulansic's who passed away from cancer in 2020.
Sarah Vaci (Lordy), another talented artist, showcased four oil paintings in the exhibit, with one portraying Becker. These pieces are part of her “Metamorphosis 100” series, which currently includes 50 portraits of detransitioners, capturing their profound journeys and experiences.
On her artist website, Vaci says, “I feel these brave women should be highlighted as important figures of our time, their life experiences epitomize so much about the current state of affairs in gender ideology, lack of mental health support, sexism, homophobia, misogyny and politics of the world today.”
Reacting to the vandalism at the exhibit space, Vaci said, “It’s hard enough for detransitioners to be public, and incidents like this can intimidate them further.”
While some detransitioners, like Becker, publicly share their experiences, most prefer privacy, often due to fear of backlash. About 75 percent don’t disclose their detransition decision to the medical providers who originally assisted in their transition. Detransitioning is frequently dismissed as rare, but evidence indicates a rising trend. Recent data shows 10-30 percent of individuals detransition after a few years. Many are now raising ethical concerns regarding the informed consent process, particularly in light of their age or mental health status during the time.
“A Nasty Piece of Work: The Art of Dissident Feminists” will run until October 15. For those interested in viewing the exhibit, location details are available upon request on their website, and there are plans to take the exhibit to other cities.
The SFPD is currently seeking assistance from the community to gather more information related to the vandalism. Anyone with knowledge or details regarding the case is urged to contact the San Francisco Police Department at 415-575-4444. For those who wish to remain anonymous, there is an option to send a text tip to TIP411 and start the message with “SFPD.”
For additional coverage of this event, read Christina’s post on PUBLIC.