A friend telling me why she didn't attend the exhibition.

It’s still so much about what they think

 “I wanted to go, I really did… I was with my boyfriend that weekend and with all the vaginas on display, I would be embarrassed if he spotted mine and knew I posed!”

A friend asked me the question that gave birth to vagina vérité (do you like the way your vagina looks?) during the summer of 2000. I shot my first vagina portrait that September. Documentary-style photographs, just a little larger than life—for women, so we could see ourselves for ourselves.

Over the course of ten years, I made over 100 vagina portraits. The women who posed may, or may not, have been comfortable with their bodies, or with being seen. They range in age and lifestyle, and relationship with their vaginas. The only thing they have in common is trusting me with their v-portraits.

All along, I kept thinking that maybe I didn’t really need to do this. Each time I saw that The Vagina Monologues was being performed or that the word “vagina” was showing up on tv, I thought these were signs of the end of a chapter, that we were good, we had space for our bodies and our stories. It’s amazing how I could take such small moments (important moments, but still just moments) and extrapolate out what I wanted to be true. That we had sovereignty over our bodies, that it was our view that mattered. That we would trust ourselves first. Before anyone else’s idea (or what we think they think), that we were trusting ourselves before any claim about how we should be, as womxn, having a body.

“I wanted to go, I really did… I was with my boyfriend that weekend and with all the vaginas on display, I would be embarrassed if he spotted mine and knew I posed!”

The exhibition she didn’t attend was on 08-Dec-2018, titled Normal Is Diverse. You can read some of the thoughts of some of the womxn and mxn who attended here.

Looking forward to hearing what you think!

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