SWAN Day Overview

Sandra Oh

Sandra Oh did a video for the first SWAN Day in 2008.

SWAN Day/Support Women Artists Now Day is an international initiative designed to showcase the power and diversity of women’s creativity.  Every year since 2008 people around the world have created events that celebrate women artists during the months of March and April.  The program has had five goals:

  • To shine a spotlight on women artists – especially artists who are often marginalized by mainstream arts and media organizations because of their race, class, sexual preference, gender identity, disability or other issues.
  • To give women artists opportunities to practice and improve their skills at marketing, budgeting, fundraising, and other skills that they need as producers of arts events.
  • To help women artists build support networks for themselves by working with other artists in their communities to produce events featuring women artists.
  • To encourage women audience members to support women artists by using their power as feminist arts consumers.
  • To have fun!

International Support Women Artists Now Day was co-founded in 2007 by Martha Richards, the Executive Director of WomenArts, and Jan Lisa Huttner, the Editor-in-Chief of FF2Media.com and founder of WITASWAN (Women in the Audience Supporting Women Artists Now).  Please visit our history of SWAN Day page for more information about the origins of this event.

The official date for SWAN Day is always the last Saturday of March, but you are welcome to celebrate SWAN Day any time during March or April, since the spirit of SWAN Day is far more important than the exact date.  The first SWAN Day was held in March 2008, and there have been over 2,000 SWAN events in 37 countries as of April 2020.  WomenArts ran the program from 2008 through June 2018.  StateraArts collaborated with WomenArts on the management of SWAN Day 2018, and StateraArts led the program (with support from WomenArts) during 2019 and 2020.  You can view lists of all the SWAN events for each year from 2009 through 2018, and you can read about many of the events by searching the WomenArts Blog for “SWAN.”

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we expect that most of the events for SWAN Day 2021 will be online, but in some ways, this is a year when the imagination and creativity of women artists is needed more than ever.  We understand that your celebrations will be different this year, but we encourage everyone to carry on the SWAN spirit and create whatever you can. If you are able to do an online SWAN event, or if you want to post blogs, pictures, music, or videos celebrating women, trans or non-binary artists, please use the hashtag #SWANDay2021 so that others will know what your are doing.

If you would like to use our classic SWAN logo in the publicity for your event, you can download it for free here>>

WomenArts would like to thank all of the people who have organized and participated in SWAN Day events over the years.  It has been a joy to work with all of you.