I am fat.
It always shocks people whenI say this. They rush to tell me that Iam not, that I am beautiful, or sometimes that I am some other more sociallyacceptable word for fat. My fatnessmight make them a little uncomfortable, but my brazen acknowledgement (andacceptance) of it blows their mind, especially since I state it as fact.
As someone who is bothtaller and heavier than the average American woman I have always been acutelyaware that I take up way more physical space then is deemed appropriate by contemporaryfeminine beauty standards. Commentsabout my weight and physical appearance, and how to improve it, is a regularoccurrence. The suggestion is alwaysthat somehow in losing parts of myself I could become more.
The pressure to conform tothe perceived norm that is represented not only in the media, but also withinour own cultures and class structures becomes internalized and the ways inwhich we see ourselves can become incredibly skewed. Through self-imposed practices and bodyrituals the objects that once bound us physically now are unseen, and yet, thebindings are stronger than ever.
These pieces in particularrepresent my right, and the rights of the individuals I draw, to exist, as is,in spaces that we have been previously been denied. We are unapologetic and resilient, a strengthcultivated from determination to normalize all the shapes our bodies take.