I adore every aspect of language and the beautiful ways it can be used to empower us all. But sometimes words aren’t enough and the famous saying ‘A picture can paint a thousand words’ seems somewhat prominent, especially in the work of Anne-Claire Fleer.
I’ve written in the past both about the exploration of creativity and how it affects our mental health, as well as the importance of feminism. Since the beginning of my adolescent life, I’ve witnessed first-hand the growth of both feminist activity and the awareness of mental health. The awareness of these two intertwining subjects is constantly expanding and the way in which they are perceived has never been so positive.
Which brings me to Anne-Claire Fleer: an abstract artist, inspired by the flourishing beauty in women across the globe. Fleer focuses her art on the delicate intricacies of the female body; overlapping female figures and canvas to capture the true beauty of women world-wide. We are art. We are something to be admired, no matter what shape or size. Fleer states that “By turning female bodies into living works of art, I want to help any generation of women remember how beautiful they are.” In a world of perfection, through the eyes of a social media absorbed society, this is the type of art we need to accept, and even admire, our own perfect imperfections.
When asked about the inspiration of her work, Fleer states: “What started as an experiment to grow as an artist, has grown into something way bigger: the meaningful celebration and empowerment of the female body. The moment I realised it was more than ‘just’ body painting, was when I started seeing a pattern in those first ladies I painted and how they transformed during our sessions. I open up the room for them to get vulnerable, share and grow.” This vulnerability, something so fragile and delicate, further fuels the beautiful message of empowerment throughout Fleer’s work, and the meaning behind each painting seems somewhat heightened.
As Fleer stated, what started as ‘just body painting’ is now evolving into something much bigger, something much more powerful and something every woman should have the opportunity to be involved in. ‘Project X’ is the next phase of Anne-Claire’s body painting mission. The mission aims to paint one woman a day for 365 days. Changing our world one woman at a time. Fleer has spoken out about the hardship of not being able to afford to paint some women with particularly heartbreaking stories for free. These stories are ones that have changed the way these women look at their bodies, sometimes leaving them wanting only to be in another, alternate, colourful body for at least a couple of hours. This beautiful concept is powered by Fleer’s passion for female empowerment and is something I truly believe will help these women overcome any insecurities or negative perspectives they have about their bodies. Anne-Claire is proposing to raise enough money to be able to fund this amazing project by creating Kickstarter campaigns and contacting the Arts Council. If you’d like to either donate or help out with this project, see Anne-Claire Fleer’s contact details at the bottom of this page.
When asked about her favourite piece of work, Anne-Claire modestly replies “I absolutely love all the pieces I do. No favourites!”… So perhaps take a look at some of my favourite pieces below:
Each image is so transcendently individual, evoking an array emotions and stories. My interpretation of these images is highly subjective of colour: the black and white, more monotonous pieces, evoke such tenderness, whereas the vibrance of technicolour suggests more freeing, optimistic tones.
Sometimes, most of the time actually, the beauty of art is that it’s difficult to distinguish where the art stops and reality begins (cheesy, I know). This is perhaps what makes Anne-Claire’s work so touching: “I paint their bodies so that they blend in with my abstract artworks, which serve as a backdrop. I photograph the result, tricking the eye as to where the artwork ends and the body begins.”
If you’d like to see more of Anne-Claire Fleer’s work, go follow her on instagram or take a look at her website! If you’d like to either get involved in Project X or donate, email Anne-Claire at email@example.com.