The Milk Truck (2011)

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The Milk Truck

The Milk Truck is the creation of Jill Miller – artist and Fellow in the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University. The Milk Truck was included in the 2011 Pittsburgh Biennial at the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh.

The Milk Truck is a combination of guerrilla theater, activism and a little slapstick humor. Yes, we have a truck with a giant boob on the roof. There’s a reason for making The Milk Truck – to create a mobile breastfeeding unit that allows mothers to feed their babies in places where they have been discouraged – restaurants, shopping malls, public spaces, etc. Babies should be able to eat anywhere. And everywhere.

The Milk Truck’s primary mission is to help hungry babies eat by providing a supportive environment for women to nurse their babies. However, the truck will also make regular rounds on its “Pump Route” to offer a private, clean space for women to pump breast milk at work. In addition, and due to popular demand, The Milk Truck will visit businesses and events that are breastfeeding-friendly, to celebrate their awesomeness. (We want to hang out with like-minded people!)

Here’s one example of how The Milk Truck works:
A woman in a restaurant is nursing her baby at a dining table. Restaurant management ask her to stop creating a spectacle and use the bathroom for nursing, or leave the restaurant. The mother is in a dilemma – she simply wants to feed her baby in the same space where she is eating her food. Who wants to eat lunch in a bathroom? Not her baby! And she shouldn’t have to. The woman tweets to The Milk Truck her location and situational information. The Milk Truck posts the information to Facebook, Twitter, and The Milk Truck’s website. The Milk Truck (and supporters) arrive to the restaurant location, park in front of the establishment, and set up the mobile breastfeeding unit. The woman feeds her baby in the comfort of the truck’s cozy chairs and shaded canopy, and the restaurant owner is left to ponder the sense of making a woman feel uncomfortable for doing something as simple as feeding her baby. Thought the nursing mother created a spectacle? Meet the Milk Truck!

Video documentation by Benjamin Welmond.


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