Hardness. This word sparks many associations in my mind. Hard muscles versus soft fat, strong and weak personalities, power relations, sex. All of these come together in gender struggles- something that I always dealt with, and still is dealing with.
When painting this piece 9 years ago, I was in a weird position in high-school. Seen as too aggressive for a girl and a tom-boy who doesn’t wear skinny jeans and short skirts, others thought of me as a hard person while constantly questioning my sexuality and gender.
At that time, I learned about Salvador Dali, and was fascinated by his visualization of softness and hardness that gave me a surreal uncomfortable feeling. I went to the school’s studio with the goal of conveying a similar feeling myself. I don’t know if I achieved my goal, but when I stare at it sometimes, my first painting post-kindergarten does makes me feel, something.