"Image Credit: Carol Rossetti
When Brazilian graphic designer Carol Rossetti began posting colorful illustrations of women and their stories to Facebook, she had no idea how popular they would become.
Thousands of shares throughout the world later, the appeal of Rosetti’s work is clear. Much like the street art phenomenon Stop Telling Women To Smile, Rossetti’s empowering images are the kind you want to post on every street corner, as both a reminder and affirmation of women’s bodily autonomy.
"It has always bothered me, the world’s attempts to control women’s bodies, behavior and identities," Rossetti told Mic via email. "It’s a kind of oppression so deeply entangled in our culture that most people don’t even see it’s there, and how cruel it can be."
Rossetti’s illustrations touch upon an impressive range of intersectional topics, including LGBTQ identity, body image, ageism, racism, sexism and ableism. Some characters are based on the experiences of friends or her own life, while others draw inspiration from the stories many women have shared across the Internet.
"I see those situations I portray every day," she wrote. "I lived some of them myself."
Despite quickly garnering thousands of enthusiastic comments and shares on Facebook, the project started as something personal — so personal, in fact, that Rossetti is still figuring out what to call it. For now, the images reside in albums simply titled “WOMEN in english!" or "Mujeres en español!" which is fitting: Rossetti’s illustrations encompass a vast set of experiences that together create a powerful picture of both women’s identity and oppression.
One of the most interesting aspects of the project is the way it has struck such a global chord. Rossetti originally wrote the text of the illustrations in Portuguese, and then worked with an Australian woman to translate them to English. A group of Israeli feminists also took it upon themselves to create versions of the illustrations in Hebrew. Now, more people have reached out to Rossetti through Facebook and offered to translate her work into even more languages. Next on the docket? Spanish, Russian, German and Lithuanian.
It’s an inspiring show of global solidarity, but the message of Rossetti’s art is clear in any language. Above all, her images celebrate being true to oneself, respecting others and questioning what society tells us is acceptable or beautiful.
"I can’t change the world by myself," Rossetti said. "But I’d love to know that my work made people review their privileges and be more open to understanding and respecting one another."”
From the site: All images courtesy Carol Rossetti and used with permission. You can find more illustrations, as well as more languages, on her Facebook page.
Oooh. I reblogged a partial version of this recently but I didn’t know how many more there were! I LOVE these!
OK SO THERE ARE TONS MORE OF THESE OF THE ARTISTS FB PAGE. GUYS THESE ARE AWESOME.
LETS APPLAUD CAROL ROSSETTI EVERYONE
Ok so I love all of them except for the Vegetarian one because it says nobody has anything to do with what you “Quit eating” and honestly ok obviously this is not targeting people with anorexia or other eating disorders but quite frankly sometimes it IS your loved ones’ place to step in and intervene when things get really unhealthy and sometimes people do not make educated choices.
I know people who have tried veganism and ended up getting anemic (some not seriously, some very seriously) because of certain physiological, individual issues their bodies had. I know some pro-ana people who have masked their disease by claiming veganism and vegetarianism, but really meant, “I don’t want to eat anything here and I need an excuse.”
Food and “not eating” something is an incredibly complex issue and when you are making decisions that injure yourself it becomes less of an issue of “everybody should stop trying to dictate what I do” and more of an issue of, “do you realize that you an endangering yourself or not?”
I’m not saying that you should go up to every vegetarian on the street ever and be like “STOP YOU WILL DIE.” Because that’s not true, and lots of people can be healthy and vegan/vegetarian.
But there are people who cannot (I’m pretty sure I’m one of them; there are so many fruits and vegetables I can’t eat and so many weird intolerances that I have that like…meat is one of the few things I have left) and if somebody is compromising their physical well-being and you care about them, you should probably say something. Politely, in a productive way that doesn’t attack.