Re-creation of Yoni drawing

An artist made a re-interpretation or re-creation of this drawing of mine.

You can find it here. (Scroll down)

He writes:

Feminist Character Objects to Process — of Violence

From Coordinamenta Femminista e Lesbica, ATTI – Il personale e politico, il sociale e il privato, 2012; Habib Boulares, Histoire de la Tunisie, 2011; and John Lucas & Co., Practical suggestions on exterior decoration, 1898.

On the OpenSource library at Internat Archives, an Italian feminist collective published a poster and pamphlet announcing a demonstration protesting violence against women. The pamphlet featured graphic work by talented European cartoonist Nina Nijsten, including a simple cartoon of a woman using the triangle hand signal that means “I object to the current process” — at least that’s what it meant when used in Occupy Philadelphia. I superimposed that figure on a scene of bloody, centuries-old mayhem as if she is objecting to the process of War. (The scene is a detail from a 16th century print by Maarten van Heemskerck, showing Charles V’s Conquest of Tunis in 1535, in which 30,000 civilians were killed; it is in the British Museum and was reproduced in a history of Tunisia.) Nijsten also did a whimsical collection of circles and spirals that seemed to symbolize the diversity of a free society, and I faded that into the picture, as if that blooming richness is part of the future. Continuing my color studies from old sources, the coloring was drawn from a 19th century color scheme for a house from the Lucas paint sample book, seen in small image at right. It’s rather garish to my eye. 5-5-7-11 border includes Nijsten’s circles overlaid on marbleized paper, source unknown.
Nijsten asked folks who use her image to write to her, and I did. Her reply was friendly and encouraging. “Actually the meanings you added to my artwork were not the ones that I thought of, but I like them anyway. The hand symbol stands for the yoni sign. It symbolises female power and was used a lot in the second wave feminist movement. I didn’t know it had another meaning in the Occupy movement.” My fanciful story of the young cartoon feminist placing a “Point of Order” objection to centuries-old slaughter guided me in making the piece. That’s the power of personal artistic RE-creation. Something new is added. (This is also not the first time in my life I have been clueless on the subject of yoni.)

The same drawing has been used by the Vulva La Vida Festival in Brazil too and I’ve adjusted it for the band Vagina Dentata, adding teeth to the hands.


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