Fuck the Shame Away!

Fuck The Shame Away

Menstrual blood on paper

The name speaks for itself and should be taken literally. This is an invitation!
Is there anything in the picture making you flush? Anything in the picture related to shame for you? No? Great! It took me a while to get there – if I’m already there at all!

Personally, I see shame about hair, masturbation, and menstruation. It was the shame towards my menstrual blood that led me to make this painting.

I see the root to it in a thought I had long ago: “I have people licking me while I’m menstruating, but I don’t really have a clue what my menstrual blood actually tastes like, except for a few after-cunnilingus impressions when I got a kiss afterwards. And I remember a feeling of distastefulness coming up. And there it was: SHAME.

Fuck this! These people seem to accept my bodily fluid more than I do? I don’t want that! And then came the question: But how can I change that?

First Idea: By trying it, of course. So next time I got my period, I took out my menstrual cup, looked at it, dipped a finger in, and tasted it. Bloody, and ok actually. First step done.
Later on, I accidentally found a webinar about menstrual blood that turned out to be full of ideas on how to get a better connection with it. One idea that caught me was: painting!

So I bought some droppers at the pharmacy to store the blood of each day separately, and some time later I did the first painting.

Fast forward to the prephase of “Fuck The Shame Away”: I made a couple paintings until I needed to produce more paint, and then an interesting feeling came up: I couldn’t wait to menstruate! And, surprisingly, I felt productive just by lying around and menstruating. I love this!

And while painting, there was a completely bloody mess on the floor that didn’t even bother me much. That is a development I was looking for!

The few things I used to create this painting are: paper, my blood (each day of one menstruation stored in a different container), water, and a brush. The variety in colors is due to the different shades from day to day, and to the amount of water it is mixed with. After painting, the colors changed a bit over time. 

And for those who are wondering, it doesn’t smell – if I get really close and inhale deeply, I can catch a soilish smell.

Maria Landmesser