Self-Portrait as Grande Odalisque


Graphite on archival paper with gold leaf
Image: 8 3/4” x 12 1/2”
Frame: 15.5” x 19.25” x 1 1/4”
Shipped framed

TRIGGER WARNING: this description contains a description of sexual assault.

It is difficult to know what to think of beautiful things that remind you of past harm. I loved creating this self-portrait! I enjoyed experimenting with a new drawing technique and working with gold leaf for the first time. And creating a self-portrait that was unashamedly erotic felt liberating.

However, I drew this piece based on a photograph taken by Angus Whyte, who started offering me massages with “finishes” when I was 17. I needed some soft core photography for my profile on an escorting site. And erotic photography was something that I knew I could rely on him for. For fun, I asked him to take a few photos in the style of “Grande Odalisque” by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres—the poster child of the straight white male gaze.

In this composition, I blurred the boundary between subject and background by wrapping my body in the scene’s decorative elements, suggesting that I was giving myself over while also being consumed and being made to be like just another visually interesting object.

1 in stock

Additional information

Dimensions19.25 × 15.5 × 2 in


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