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Planned Parenthood is celebrating its 100th anniversary, and people across the country are joining in to mark the milestone. For 100 years, the trusted healthcare provider has worked to promote “a commonsense approach to women’s health and well-being, based on respect for each individual’s right to make informed, independent decisions about health, sex, and family planning,” with an estimated one in five American women receiving care from Planned Parenthood at least once in her life. To celebrate Planned Parenthood’s anniversary, Los Angeles-based art photographer Maggie West has...
  Khoudia Diop is a nineteen-year-old model working out of New York City and Paris who is revolutionizing what it means to look “high fashion.” Originally from Senegal (a country where between 52 and 67 percent of women use skin lightening products), Khoudia spent her childhood being bullied for her dark complexion. “I was picked on by other kids, when I was a bit younger because [of the darkness] of my skin tone,” she told The Huffington Post. “But this is something that is actually quite...
Tattoo flash, in particular, pin-up flash, has been a large part of Western tattoo history since the late 19th century. Tattoo flash can be defined as the repetitive American Traditional imagery that was developed by the legendary tattoo artist, Norman Collins a.k.a Sailor Jerry.  Typically, tattoo flash is done in the classic American Traditional style, which can be characterized by its bold black outlines and a limited color palette. American Traditional was the first tattoo style to be developed using a modern tattoo machine and helped...
A year and a half ago, Emma Sulkowicz carried a mattress across the stage as she graduated from Columbia University. It was the culmination of a year-long performance art piece called “Mattress Performance (Carry That Weight),” in which Sulkowicz carried a 50-lb. dorm mattress with her everywhere she went, pledging she wouldn’t stop until Columbia expelled the student who raped her in her dorm room — which never happened. Sulkowicz’s performance drew nationwide attention and, with a memorable appearance on the cover of New York magazine,...
via Women's Project Theater, photo by Carol Rosegg You may know Lisa Lampanelli from her standup routine, from her bold-and-brazen presence at Comedy Central Roasts, or from her roles in quite a few blockbuster comedies. Her comedy is tough, unapologetic, and doesn’t pull any punches — but what else would you expect from comedy’s self-proclaimed "Lovable Queen of Mean"?Lisa, however, has now entered a new realm of art and writing: Off-Broadway theater. In her play, Stuffed, she takes on issues of food, body image, identity, and...
Placing inhibitions aside, photographer Jordan Matter captured hundreds of the most talented dancers in the world as they stepped out of their comfort zones and bared their beautiful bodies to the mystery of the night. Matter's daring book, Dancers After Dark, consist of 150 thrilling and breathtaking photographs of professional dancers and performers posing naked at night. It's a celebration of the outrageous, the unlikely — and courage to say yes, absolutely yes — to danger, to exhilaration, and to thrill. The dancers are photographed in the public...

Although the function and meaning of tattoos has changed throughout time, they have always existed as a cultural marker. In a modern western context, tattooing represents a reclamation of one’s body and a sense of autonomy. It's a field of expression that is much more accessible now because of social media such as Instagram. But female and gender queer artists remain underrepresented in the dominant discourse about tattoos.     This list acts a directory, and hopefully the start of a more prominent female and genderqueer presence in...
The Guerrilla Girls pictured outside the Whitechapel Gallery. Photo: David Parry, via whitechapelgallery.org The Guerrilla Girls know how to silence a room. Dressed head-to-toe in black, their faces concealed behind snarling masks, the impression is something between a gang of bank robbers and superheroes in disguise. It’s unexpected when they speak in bright, amiable tones, approaching visitors to shake hands and pose for pictures. The somewhat jarring incongruity in this approach echoes the central tension between aggression and playfulness in their work, at its most distinctive...
Over time, artists of varying creative disciplines have originated self-portraits as a way to connect their own experiences to their art and to reflect on culturally relevant experiences. Whether the message is political or personal, influencers such as Frida Kahlo and Vincent Van Gogh have attempted to de-stigmatize artists acting as both creator and  subject. They have inspired countless artists to tackle contemporary issues through self-portraiture. Today, the self-portraits of 21 female artists, whose talents span from painting to mixed media to video, have been...
"Renata Borgatti, Au Piano" by Romaine Brooks, 1920. She was a classical musician and one of Rosmaine Brooks's lovers.  1920s Paris. Bohemian, artistic, full of expatriates and very, very queer. However, the history of queer expatriate women in France has been lost throughout the ages with all of the praise given Picasso, Matisse, and Dalí — just to name a few.  In a new exhibition, the Smithsonian American Art Museum has brought one of those forgotten figures of queer bohemia, and her beautiful portraits, back to our...
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