Popaganda: Inside Michele Pred’s Feminist Artist Studio

In the fourth episode of Popaganda’s GLAMOUR season, host Carmen Rios visits feminist artist Michele Pred in her Oakland, California, studio and watches her make some of her famous vintage-handbags-turned-mini-billboards.

Michele Pred has been making and exhibiting feminist work for the last 10 years, but her passion for the movement goes back to some of her earliest childhood experiences. In the wake of the 2016 election, Pred’s iconic feminist work—which reclaims the feminine, often through found materials, and in many cases is also lit up by neon wire—experienced a new wave of acclaim and virality. Pred has spent the last few years organizing marches and radical love parades with other feminist artists, decking out riot gear in feminist slogans and—most infamously—transforming vintage purses into political statements.

Pred sat down with Carmen for a wide-ranging interview about the roots of her work and how feminism has transformed her artistry. She also showed Carmen around her studio and even offered her a close-up glimpse into how she makes her handbags—blinking lights and all—and then posed Carmen for the first picture in her latest project.

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Photo courtesy of Michele Pred

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by Carmen Rios
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Carmen Rios is the host of Bitch’s Popaganda podcast. She’s also the Managing Digital Editor at Ms. magazine and co-host of Trigger Happy, a weekly webseries about women’s issues on Binge Network. She has been described as “petulant and idiotic,” “intimidating to some,” “vapid and uninteresting” and “brazenly misandrist.”