Queen Art – Pencil Drawing

Posted on

Further Insights into My Queen Art

When people react badly to nudity in art and actively go out of their way to contact the artist with messages of hate, anger and violence, it can be a scary thing. But once thing is certain – if art is created in part to provoke a reaction, then that response can only mean the art is doing something right.

The Story Behind the Artwork

Queen has been my most controversial piece to date. I created this pencil drawing after becoming incredibly frustrated with Facebook and Instagram’s stringent policy on nipples – at the time, it didn’t seem to matter what I did or how I censored, I was constantly being shadowbanned. Fingers crossed, I seem to have evaded that for the last few weeks, but I live in constant fear of having my account shut down and I’m still unable to promote any of my posts, so I must be on some kind of black list.
I’m often confused by people’s abject shock to naked bodies. The majority of us are born through vaginas and suckle nipples to survive in the immediate aftermath of birth, so I’m never sure at what point we’re supposed to say to children: “You saw nothing! Nudity is perversion!” Don’t get me wrong, I’m no nudist, being inherently body shy, but I have no issue with people are are and just can’t understand the outrage at showing people what they already know to be beneath our clothing.

Rebel Rebel

So I decided to be rebellious and create a pencil drawing of a completely naked woman and not just a nude, a woman with her legs splayed. Because nipples may upset some people, but labia make them positively apoplectic. And not only was this woman naked, she was a woman of colour, which was actually something I did without thinking, but maybe was another subconscious finger to Facebook. Naturally, I had to censor to promote my work on social media (the Facebook owned socials, anyway – we all know and love Twitter for being pure filth and all hail that freedom… even if it does give trolls free reign to bully) but the fact that the link I posted took people to the provocative piece on my website made me smile internally. 
The messages started as soon as I posted to Facebook – I had people telling me I was disgusting, I was accused of being a paedophile (which baffled me, since my model is clearly well into her 20s), I was patronised about life drawing classes (which I’ve done plenty of, thank you) and, in one instance, I was told I was literally asking to be raped. People were absolutely outraged. I was taken aback by the reaction, to be honest. I felt like I’d posted it as a cheeky “Let’s unite against Facebook’s rules” but in actual fact was being absolutely pilloried by peers and people who weren’t even in the art industry. There were people on my side too, of course, and out of the barrage of vitriol came some nice art connections.

A Piece of Art with Many Designs

My Queen art remains one of the top landing pages on Google Analytics and I’ve sold several prints via Redbubble. People are fascinated and scared of her and for a simple, small pencil sketch, that still surprises me. The power of the foof. If nothing else, it’s a reminder that society is still scared of their own sexual feelings. No wonder sex workers get such a bad rap – we want and like sex, but we’ve been taught sexuality is something to be disgusted by.
After I posted the censored version, a friend pointed out that it was actually more powerful than the uncensored version – a comment on how we’re told to cover ourselves and be ashamed of our bodies. I created some designs for Redbubble with colourful backgrounds – pink for femininity, acid yellow for impact, and khaki green for power. I called her Queen Censored.

Example Redbubble products below

My friend went a step further and said that, more than nipples and vagina, if I added a censorship bar to the mouth, it was a commentary on how women have been gagged throughout history in general, and black women in particular. Again, I created some designs for Redbubble. Pink and acid yellow for the same reasons, but dark red for black blood spilt and a neutral beige to emphasise the feeling of being muted. This one I called Queen Silenced.

Example Redbubble products below

The original Queen art is available to buy direct from my website.

All designs, whether it’s the original uncensored piece, Queen Censored or Queen Silenced are available in all kinds of printing formats and across all clothing and home decor products on Redbubble.

Luxury framed or canvas prints are available from Saatchi.