Petra Sviberg, a seafarer on Viking Line’s ferry Viking Cinderella, focuses on the role women have in the shipping industry, highlighting that women have still a stereotypical image and presenting the Swedish #metoo movement in Sweden called Vågrätt.
Sviberg is the project manager of the new initiative Vågrätt, which aims to improve the way female seafarers are portrayed.
She commented that
When I was Googling for art about sailors the results were depressing. They had stuff like mermaids … Pin-up girls of course and children in sailor suits.
Moreover, a working group was created to drive the project forward, comprising Ms Sviberg, Kalmar Maritime Academy senior lecturer Cecilia Österman, and photographer Nina Varumo.
The project aims to build an image bank that journalists can use, while the group has also had interest from maritime museums for a physical exhibition.
The project, launching in autumn, will contact female seafarers to ask them to take part and then photograph them and their places of work.
Up to now, the initiative has obtained SEK 250,000 (£22,000) in funding from the Swedish Mercantile Marine Foundation. This will cover materials and travel costs. Karl Karell, director of the foundation, said it had already been discussing women’s inequality and the work of Vågrätt when the application arrived.
He concluded that
The photo project is a relevant and effective effort in the work to create and maintain sustainable working lives for both women and men … It’s in line with the aims which the foundation wholeheartedly supports for an improved working environment and well-being onboard.