Powerful Images that SAY Something | POSTER SERIES LAUNCH | “BodyBrain” by Vanessa Wirth

Today we launch the BODYTHOUGHTS POSTER SERIES. This is a collection of powerful images by inspiring artists who have been moved to create from their own personal experience with BodyThoughts. Not only are the images visually intriguing, they tell important and personal stories.

The first image in the series, BodyBrain, was created by Vanessa Wirth, a dear friend, collaborator, and badass collage artist who found her way to us.  BodyBrain is the product of over six months of collaboration and work. It is also the result of Vanessa’s reflection on her fourteen-year struggle with bulimia.

BodyBrain is a collection of twenty-three images, which Alexa Mazzarello created of her own body. They are digitally manipulated to simulate the folds of a human brain. As one mass, the bodies come together to represent the all-consuming nature of obsessive self-reflection. Through validating these thoughts as truth, this thought-constructed "self" becomes an isolated entity, outside of which nothing else exists limiting experience, connection and creativity.

The poster will be available for purchase at the BodyThoughts Toronto pop-up at 367 King Street W. Buy tickets HERE.

VANESSA'S STORY:

I spent a good chunk of fourteen years thinking about my body. Constantly. Those thoughts can be boiled down to one particular family of thoughts; the "am I fat?" family of thoughts. A reliably consistent parade of:

“I'm fat.”
“I look gross.”
“I need to get toned.”
“My legs are disgusting.”
“I'm too ugly to go outside.”
etc.

During my fourteen years of bulimia, hating my body and churning over these thoughts became my life's purpose. I wasn't connected to any purpose beyond how I looked because I didn't see that it was actually possible to aspire to do anything else. 

I had no useful talents. I was not smart. My ideas were dumb. I would never amount to anything. Or so I thought. 

I developed self-loathing early on in life, and in the context of our airbrushed, tight and toned culture, that became the foundation upon which my body-hate was built. 

This is not just my story. It is the story of most people. Each one of us has a voice inside of our head which is constantly commentating, judging, and assessing ourselves, others, and the world around us. 

Stop and listen to it right now. 

Do you hear it? 

You may notice that the voice is often not kind. Perhaps your voice doesn't attack your body, but instead your intelligence, creativity, or social status. Perhaps it attacks other people. 

Where does that voice stop you from reaching for your dreams? From pursuing a purpose that inspires you? Connecting to a person with a shared passion? Or telling someone "I love you”?

You may notice another thing about that voice; it is often afraid or aggressive, which is really just fear in disguise.

Almost two years ago, I gave up being bulimic. 

I decided I could either live by the words of that fearful little voice, or by a creation that was larger than me and my small thoughts. 

I chose creativity, connection, fun and love. 

The fearful little voice still talks, but less and less do I live by its crushing words.

Take a look for yourself and ask:

"What are my body thoughts?"