You Look Disgusting

“Over the past few months, I’ve received thousands of messages from people all over the world who suffer or have suffered from acne, an insecurity or self confidence issues.

I wanted to create a film that showed how social media can set unrealistic expectations on both women and men. One challenge many face today, is that as a society, we’re so used to seeing false images of perfection, and comparing ourselves to unrealistic beauty standards that It can be hard to remember the most important thing – You ARE beautiful.

You are beautiful – no matter how flawed you feel, no matter how upset you may about the way you look or how hard you find it to make friends, or be confident. Believe in yourself, and never let anyone tell you’re not beautiful – not even yourself. ”

Em Ford

Muscle dysmorphia

Muscle dysmorphia, sometimes called “bigorexia“, “megarexia”, or “reverse anorexia”, is a subtype of body dysmorphic disorder, but is often also grouped with eating disorders. Affecting mostly males, and many athletes, muscle dysmorphia is obsessive preoccupation via delusional or exaggerated belief that one’s own body is too small, too skinny, insufficiently muscular, or insufficiently lean, although in most cases, the individual’s build is normal or even exceptionally large and muscular already. Disordered fixation on gaining body mass, as by devoting inordinate time and attention on exercise routines, dietary regimens, and nutritional supplements, is typical, and use of anabolic steroids is common. Usually also present are other, body-dysmorphic preoccupations that are not muscle-dysmorphic.

Muscle dysmorphia has also been called the “Adonis Complex”, which, however, encompasses broader concerns of male body image. Yet likewise, muscle dysmorphia’s rising incidence is due in part to recent popularization of extreme cultural ideals of men’s bodies. Severely distressful and distracting, muscle dysmorphia’s bodily concerns provoke absences from school, work, and socializing. Perceiving one’s body as severely undesirable, one may avoid dating. Versus other body dysmorphic disorder, rates of suicide attempts may be especially high. Although likened to anorexia nervosa in females, muscle dysmorphia is mostly unknown and tough to recognize, especially since males experiencing it typically look healthy to others. By some estimates, 10% of gym-going men experience muscle dysmorphia.

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Anorexic Models

The fashion industry has become more aware of anorexic models and the dangers of anorexia nervosa within this business. Like others who suffer from anorexia, many models develop fears over becoming fat and losing jobs. And this is a valid fear; many models have been told by managers that they need to lose weight in order to keep working.
The disease may start out innocently enough – with just harsh dieting, intense exercise, and/or the use of laxatives. Over time, however, the person’s self image gets distorted. They always see themselves as too fat for success and continue the unhealthy behaviors.

Anorexic models are common on catwalks where the pressure to fit into size zero outfits seems intense. As time goes on, an anorexic model may become very weak, develop a variety of health issues, and also show serious signs of depression. Over time, anorexia nervosa can even lead to death.


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A model wears a creation by Mark Fast during his Autumn/Winter 2011 collection show at London Fashion Week February 21, 2011.    REUTERS/Luke MacGregor  (BRITAIN - Tags: IMAGES OF THE DAY FASHION) - RTR2IX1R



Jan Fabre – “Stigmata”

For more than thirty-five years, Jan Fabre (1958, Antwerp) has played a significant role as a visual artist, theater maker, and author. His innovative and diverse body of work has earned him international recognition. In the late 1970s he studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts and the Municipal Institute of Decorative Arts and Crafts in Antwerp.

He has earned the recognition of a wide audience thanks to works such as the castle of Tivoli (1990), a ceiling entirely covered with scarab wing cases in the Hall of Mirrors of the Palais Royal in Brussels, known as Heaven of Delight (2002), and his public sculptures, including The man who measures the clouds (1998), Searching for Utopia (2003), and Totem (2004). He has also completed permanent installations in spaces such as the Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature in Paris (The Night of Diana, 2007) and the Antwerp Zoo (An Homage to Mieke: The Tortoise and An Homage to Janneke: The Tortoise, 2012), as well as his recent installation, The Gaze Within (The Hour Blue) (2011–2013), which he created for the historic royal staircase of the Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique, close to the permanent exhibition of his self-portraits in bronze and wax (Chapters I–XVIII) (2010).

Whether drawings, sculptures, objects, installations, films, performances, or thinking models, all of Jan Fabre’s works relate to faith in the body, its fragility and defense, to observing human beings, and to questioning how they will survive in the future. This fascination for the physical body and science dates back to his youth, when, influenced by the research of entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre (1823–1915), he spent a great deal of his time examining insects and other bugs, dissecting their tiny bodies and transforming them into new creatures.
Metamorphosis is a key concept in understanding Jan Fabre’s artistic world, in which the human and the animal are in constant interaction. This has inspired the artist to depict the sensory and spiritual body, and to create various bodies in transmutation, which resist the natural cycle of growth and decay. His art is a poetic resistance conducted in the name of beauty, an exercise in death and a celebration of life as a preparation for death. Over the years, the artist has created a highly personal world, with its own rules and laws as well as its own characters, symbols, and recurring motifs.


 image_3804Sanguis/Mantis (2001)



The Man Measuring the Clouds (1997/2000)



Ilad of the Bic-Art (1980)

MAXXI_JanFabre_Stigmata_ph.MusacchioIanniello_142“Stigmata” exposition, 16/10/2013 – 16/02/2014, MAXXI, Rome.