SEEHAM RAHMAN examines femininity and sexual politics in Polly Nor’s satirical illustrations. Sensuality, identity, and femininity are not new phenomena in illustration and storytelling. However, the modern woman of the 21st century represents an evolution of womanhood on an individual and societal basis. Art and design are not only articulating this social change but also actively engaging with it in pursuit of strengthening the perception of femininity. As a woman of colour, I often find it difficult to find myself represented in Western Art in a three-dimensional way. Polly Nor’s art speaks to the faults of my identity, bringing forth the wholeness of who I am. Even my demons are depicted as they really are, next to sensuous depictions of womanhood. My femininity is encapsulated; my fears revealed. The artist urges women to understand the toxicity of the internet-age through pieces such as In Your Dreams. Nor encapsulates the anxieties and responsibilities…Continue Reading

Polly Nor and The Nasty Woman

ROWEEN RAWAT’S vibrant and detailed illustrations draw numerous influences from mehndi patterns and the Great Wave of Kanagawa, to strong female protagonists such as geishas. Her work embodies cultural remembrance and freedom from societal expectations of art. Roween cites her parent’s scepticism and lack of understanding of the arts world as influences on her artistic techniques. She uses art as a therapeutic outlet and this sentiment of freedom is reflected in her work. Indeed, her practice can be characterised by the use of free hand techniques, often using inexpensive materials such as 0.5 nib pens and pro markers. Shunning the traditional canvas in favour for small sketchbooks and journals, she maintains these methods are the “best way to express your inner feelings.” Previously Roween had used oil pastels, and often created large scale pieces that were extremely meticulous and slow paced, frequently drawing for six to seven hours at a time.…Continue Reading

Roween Rawat