This new series was started in 2018 and (so far) completed in 2019. It’s a series of self-portraits in which I depict myself in an unflattering way, for the first time in my life not trying to look beautiful, embellished or pleasant. I'm looking for flaws, signs of age, even scary features, according to the tradition and the patriarchal culture under which we live. That's why I finished the series (that has simpler self-portrait paintings, under these features), with this composition based on the Medusa figure, for so long associated with women out of control, witched, with an evil spell casted on. Medusa was also the representation of the older women, unapologetically showing signs of senescence, elderly, rage. Here, I don't show a head full of snakes, but full of oppressing, stressing hands, that pull and push, oblige, measure, threaten and bully, trying to silence and make this older, raging woman, deaf and tamed. Like the spell casted on the originally beautiful maiden, because she was raped by Poseidon and got pregnant, these hands are the forces that try to condemn women upon their conceiving, through the impossible tasks of perfect motherhood, perfect marriage and superb career management, as well as implying they can not grow old, be ugly, relax and live to themselves, fulfilling their wishes and dreams, tracing their own, independent, satisfying plan.
"When we asked women what female rage looks like to them, it was always Medusa, the snaky-haired monster of myth, who came to mind”, in The book Female Rage: Unlocking Its Secrets, Claiming Its Power by Mary Valentis and Anne Devane.
Well, I say that women must address their rage, commit to their anger, command their own lives and that for that they deserve praise.
We have the right to be old and celebrate it. If not depending on the opinion of others, such as the male gaze, getting old is becoming better, happier and in many ways life gets easier. Not being under constant scrutiny, by one’s self or others, regarding seduction or erotic capital, is radically liberating.
We have the right to be ugly. We have the right to occupy the public space with our real looks, free from stereotyped beauty impositions, impossible eternal youth, and be portrayed as humans, full of interests, knowledge, self-assurance and flaws.
These are the themes I'm wishing to work on in the nearest future: aging women, female rage, ugliness and the right to be rather than to seem.