color pencil, paint marker; 12×9″
“There are many social issues that I am passionate about, but women’s rights are especially important to me. An issue that affects me and my female peers on a day to day basis is the unattainable beauty standard that is constantly pushed by popular media and advertisements. I included several beauty products and advertisements in this piece to communicate the overconsumption of unnecessary products, such as “wrinkle cream” that are advertised only to women. I included several eyes and the figures in the window to communicate the unhealthy view of femininity as a performance and the objectification of women. Valuing women based on appearance alone does not value their worth as an actual human being, and the idea that a woman must be attractive in order to be seen as worthwhile is a concept that is deeply woven into our society. Lastly, this piece is a self-portrait as I have been affected by beauty standards and objectification. I felt creating a self-portrait would communicate that it is a struggle that is extremely common amongst young women such as myself.”
ARTIST BIO: Kelly Ernst is a Grade 12 student at Mount Notre Dame Academy.