The 28 Days Journal is an experimental book and calendar. Track lunar cycles and hormone levels to discover your most creative moments.
About this project
What is 28 Days?
28 Days is a concept that explores hormonal cycles and menstrual taboos. Using meditation and reflection, 28 Days encourages work made in response to hormonal cycles. The experimental book I created, Journal, tracks lunar cycles, agrarian dates and estrogen levels. The idea came from Woman: An Intimate Geography by psychologist Natalie Angiers. She describes fluctuations of estrogen as wearing “rose-colored glasses.” I find this metaphor striking, real and want to enhance awareness around hormonal nuances.
What is the 28 Days Journal?
28 Days Journal is a way to meditate on hormonal shifts during your cycles. Emphasis is on doing one thing at a time to achieve a deeper awareness of the self. Use it to reflect daily on your hormonal shifts. Using tape, glue and scissors, you assemble the appropriate pages for your cycle length. Each day, perform the 28 Days meditation; record your feelings in yourJournal. Take your Journal with you wherever you go. I will exhibit Journals at The Hollows(September 2016). Mail Journals to 151 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211 for your Journalto be included in the installation.
Why the Five Elements of Journaling?
The different elements are taken from a variety of anthropological research to include multiple perspectives.
- Lunar cycle: The lunar cycle changes based on your location and timing, but it’s easy to look up with a few resources. Input your location and date to find where the moon is in its cycle. Use the graphic to shade in the moon phase.
- Agrarian date: Record the date that is related to crops and agriculture – it’s the easiest element! For example, the agrarian date is the day (1st), month (January) and year (2017).
- Day of cycle: The first day of your hormonal cycle is when you begin menstruation. The length of your cycles will vary between 28 and 32 days. Record the numeric identifier of that day of the cycle.
- Hormonal level: Bubble in how strong you feel the hormone level is for that day. Estrogen is what I track but there are many hormones affecting cycles (Progesterone and testosterone for example). Hormonal levels follow a similar pattern for each cycle but be aware of subtleties.
- Notes and drawings: This space is for your ideas, thoughts and responses. A simple lined area makes for fragmented feelings or notes on sensations or emotions from the day.
Why support this campaign?
This campaign launches the Journal to the public and makes it accessible to a wider community. The 28 Days Journal hopes to engage institutions who have extensive collections and concentrations in visual art, gender studies and movement. Maybe you are jewelers, ceramicists, perfumers, software engineers, artists, chefs, designers, herbalists, quilters, fabricators, musicians, witches, picklers, woodworkers, curators, weavers, photographers, dancers or publishers? You tell me! The audience cares about 28 Days because it uses reflection, creative practice and meditation to bring new intelligence, awareness and dialogue to the culture of menstruation.
Why is this experimental book important?
28 Days begins a conversation with the community about hormonal cycles and menstrual culture in America. The past study of menstruation concludes the menstrual taboo is universal and evil. But, cross-cultural studies show distinct and different rules about menstruation. Many taboos, rather than protecting society from a feminine evil, protect the perceived creative spirituality of menstruating women from the influence of others. In other customs, women created environments to foster the potent, positive spiritual force ascribed to them during menstruation. The 28 Days Journal includes perspectives that empower, neutralize and investigate the nuance of menstrual taboos. Join us in reinterpreting the hormonal cycle and offering an positive introduction for young women.
What is the future impact?
28 Days as a concept and the 28 Days Journal hits the streets of Williamsburg, Brooklyn this Fall at The Hollows. On average, the gallery has 5,000 visitors a year. Daily group meditations in the gallery invite viewers to take part. Two on-going artist collaborations focused on menstrual synchronization on are display. 28 Days also features a space where I curate in-progress and completed Journals of cycles. Two months of intensive hormonal programming uses panels, workshops and internet happenings to engage the community. Keywords describing the project are controlled group participatory research and archive project on the taboo of menstruation It is open for visitors and participants through October.
Join us on the internet
To expand the conversation, digital experiences support event programming and the movement. To get involved with the internet happenings, use #28days. Forum topics on Eve, Twitter Q&A, Facebook live events, Snapchat sessions and Instagram engagement will support panel discussion and events.
To see current artist collaborations underway using the 28 Days Meditation, follow us onInstagram.
Credits and Collaborations
- Experimental Book Page Design – Hackreative
- 28 Days Brand Identity – Derick Carss
- Film, video and photography collaboration – Leticia Bernaus
Programming for August 2016 and September 2016
- Creating Your 28 Days Journal: A Workshop
- Sunday, August 7th 2016; 9 PM – 10 PM
- Come join us for a fun, one hour workshop constructing your personal 28 Days Journal in the Eastyard at the Hollows. Journal is an experimental book created by Lara Mossler that tracks lunar cycles, agrarian dates and hormone levels. Use it to reflect daily on your hormonal shifts. Using tape, glue and scissors, you assemble the appropriate pages for your cycle length. Take your Journal home with you. Lara Mossler will exhibit Journals at the Hollows (September 2016). All supplies provided. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Connecting to the Sacred Feminine: A Meditation by MNDFL
- Sunday, Aug 14th 2016; 9 PM – 10 PM
- Masculine and feminine energies are everywhere. This meditation focuses on The Sacred Feminine, the creative energy that resides within us. Contemporary life can sometimes overwhelm and disconnect us from this fundamental part of our being. How do we balance the active qualities with more receptive elements of meditation practices? Let’s meditate, engage personal inquiry and have a modern conversation about what is feminine. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Real Talk: Hormones
- Sunday, Aug 21th 2016; 9 PM – 10 PM
- Join us and Parsley Health for an interactive discussion on how to naturally balance your hormones. Learn how to better understand your period with coaches who share experience and expertise. Parsley Health offers high tech holistic medicine in Manhattan. They use a 360° approach to health that includes personal history, current lifestyle, environment, mental and emotional factors, and genetics. The event will take place at in the Hollows Eastyard. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Contemporary Menstrual Culture in America: A Panel Discussion
- Sunday, Aug 28th 2016; 9 PM – 10 PM
- We are bringing together anthropologists, artists and scientists to discuss contemporary hormonal and menstrual culture in America. Join us for an insightful discussion from anthropological, biological and contemporary art perspectives. Panelists will each speak for fifteen minutes each on historical, contemporary and literary contexts. A question and answer session on the future and where we go from here follows. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Observing the New Moon: A Guided Experience
- Sunday, Sept 4th 2016; 9 PM – 10 PM
- Celebrate darkness in the Eastyard at the Hollows. Observe the night sky with help from expert volunteer astronomers. Thirty minute program followed by viewing of the New Moon. Total program lasts approximately 1 hour. We encourage anyone wishing to bring a telescope or binoculars to do so, but it is not required. You are more than welcome to look through ours. Weather permitting. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Economics of Menstruation: A Panel Discussion
- Sunday, Sept 11th; 9 PM – 10 PM
- We are bringing together hormonal experts, business executives and local government representatives to discuss the economics of menstruation in America. Join us for an insightful discussion from business, biological and socio-economic perspectives on the feminine hygiene market. Panelists will each speak for fifteen minutes each on historical, contemporary and economic contexts. A question and answer session on the future follows. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Observing the Full Moon: A Guided Experience
- Sunday, Sept 18th; 9 PM – 10 PM
- The night sky comes alive through storytelling from an astronomer and photographer. Thirty minute program followed by viewing of the Full Moon. Total program lasts approximately 1 hour. We encourage anyone wishing to bring a telescope or binoculars to do so, but it is not required. You are more than welcome to look through ours. Weather permitting. All sexes and ages welcome.
- Synchronicity Speakeasy
- Sunday, Sept 25th; 9 PM – 10 PM
- Join us for a sanitary pad making party to celebrate the end of the exhibition. Make no-sew feminine napkins for young women living in third-world countries. Bring a felted wool sweater (85%-100% wool that you have washed in hot water and dried in a dryer). Ignore the washing instructions on the apparel label. Bring an extra felted sweater if you would like to make them for yourself. Light refreshments served. All sexes and ages welcome.
For more information about events, email Lara at [email protected]
Risks and challenges
There are risks that are naturally part of the creative process and I will work diligently to manage and maintain a balanced budget, scope, and timeline to make this project come to life with the means I have detailed above.
Arriving in a new work space can be challenging so I have relocated to New York and the gallery space to take care of any immediate concerns with production.