The Anatomy Project
The Artemis School was founded as an answer to the lack of available education in body literacy and sexuality for women and people with vulvas. Part of this reality is that medical textbooks and anatomical models do not include all of the anatomy of female bodies. The aspects of anatomy associated with sexual arousal and pleasure, including parts of the clitoris and other erectile tissue, are largely absent from images and maps of female body anatomy. This says a lot about western culture and our relationship with women’s arousal and pleasure. If we do not know the parts that we have, how can we enjoy them?
The deficiency in whole models of vulvas has been a challenge for our teaching at The Artemis School and furthermore for our graduates’ ability to bring this work into the world in the most effective way. It is very difficult to teach sexuality education without anatomical models!
Artemis School founder, Lara Catone, has been visioning The Anatomy Project since the start of The Artemis School. In 2017 Lara was living in a community home in Berkeley, CA with artist Jote Mahern. On a sunny afternoon Jote was painting and Lara began to share about this project. Jote, who has made large scale sculptures inspired by vulvas, bones, tendons and the pulse before release, became very excited about bringing this project to life.
The Power of Seeing & Naming
As an artist, Jote has embarked on an authentic anatomical study of individuals creating a poetic interpretation of what’s real—and personal—within a fine art context using watercolor and ink.
We are in the process of completing our initial paintings. Our intention is to raise $6,750 for the creation of beautiful, accurate images of the complete female sexual anatomy—including muscles, erectile tissue, nerves, reproductive organs in multiple states of arousal—and to make them available to the public for FREE. We will also have high resolution sets available for purchase for educators.
The Anatomy Project honors the mystery of real bodies intersecting with art, education, body autonomy, sexual pleasure, self and collective advocacy. We recognize that every body is unique and we are setting out to create fine art educational images of what is real. All the images we transmit with this project are gathered relationally as we think together with female bodied individuals identifying across the gender spectrum. Through this initiative we aim to decolonize our bodies and to encourage folks to create their own values and words in the liberation of their own bodies. We intend to reclaim the erotic from control and demonization and female bodies from the primary association with reproduction so that we can remember our innate capacities for embodied knowing, strength, creativity, joy and pleasure.
The heart of this collaboration uncovers the bodyscape, the journey into the wild landscape of our bodies, that is both more than us and at the core of us as well as the place to which we deeply belong.
This is a grassroots project that can only be realized through a community of support. We welcome allies and co-creators as we move into the fundraising phase for the completion of our images. We are currently seeking non-profit fiscal sponsorship.
Are you part of an organization or network that might want to support or collaborate on fundraising for this project? Please send us a message below. We look forwarding to hearing from you!