Touch 2023

Collage with Linoleum Block and Screenprint Elements on Cotton Rag Paper
11.13 x 14.88 inches

TOUCH is one of my love languages, and I delight in both giving and receiving touch, fostering healthy communication around consensual interactions with my cherished friends and loved ones. The abundance of touch in my life fills me with immense joy.

However, it hasn't always been this way. Growing up, my family didn't engage in much caring touch. The influence of Catholicism in my family instilled negative connotations around touch, and even dating was forbidden. Our culture has instilled shame and limitations around touch, conditioning us to believe that touch is scarce or solely reserved for romantic relationships. This mentality stems from colonial influences, which have ingrained possessiveness and ownership over others' bodies into our collective consciousness. These influences and experiences led me down a path of seeking touch in unhealthy ways during my twenties, unaware of the impact it had on my well-being.

But I have evolved and shed those detrimental beliefs and programming. Through my creations, I celebrate the beauty of touch.

As human beings, we require touch to thrive and flourish. I envision a culture where we could openly and respectfully receive the touch we desire from a variety of trusted individuals. Imagine a world where we could express our preferences for touch without judgment or shame. Such a reality is not only possible but essential to our liberation. It calls for unlearning the narratives imposed by colonialism and capitalism, and instead, embracing a mindset that honors personal agency and fosters a culture of consent and abundant touch.

Together, let's dismantle harmful narratives and cultivate a world where touch is celebrated, respected, and available to all who seek its nurturing embrace.

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