FruitingBodies

FruitingBodies is a series that I started creating in 2017, as a way of examining the sexualized female form in a way that disrupted the concept of the male gaze. The body language of the figures is drawn directly from pin-up shots, magazine spreads, and boudoir images, creating a connection to the gaze and idealized beauty, but the craggy, pitted texture of their 'flesh' denies a purely aesthetic reading. These figures are simultaneously decaying and springing forth with new life: colonized by mycelia and producing fruiting bodies. These paintings explore a dualism contained within the female body: the embodiment of both creative life, and decay/death. Much like a mushroom, women are situated at both ends of the life cycle.  Although comely, these are not bodies presenting themselves for your pleasure.

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bloomingbodies

“How much we know and understand ourselves is critically important, but there is something that is even more essential to living a wholehearted life: loving ourselves.” Brene Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection BloomingBodies is a series of inky figurative paintings celebrating the grounded self - a body settled in the understanding of its own strength and unique beauty. When representing the female form, I try to always be mindful of the unrealistic beauty standards unavoidable in our day-to-day and sold to us by the media — it’s important to me to have some sort of element that undermines the illusion of perfection. In the case of this series, the wet-on-wet technique I used to flesh out the figures creates a mottled skin, chaotic and unpredictable. The figure blooms from the ground and settles into her space: gentle, tender, and sure. Headless and unfazed by the viewers’ gaze, she grounds herself in self-understanding and turns her gaze inward. it is so full here in my self Created in collaboration with award-winning portrait photographer and confidence cheerleader Michele Mateus, this series is open to expansion and collaboration. Imagine turning yourself into a gorgeous piece of art and being able to love on yourself Every. Single. Day. Like a love-letter to the self, these paintings honour the power of the feminine, and celebrate moments of spiritual growth and self-acceptance.