In Aztec mythology, female deities are remembered as givers of life and creators of the world. For instance, a myth states that when Coyolxauqui, the goddess of the moon, found out her mother Coatlicue, goddess of life and death, got pregnant after tucking a ball of hummingbird feathers into her skirt, she gathered her 400 brothers and led them to the Coatepec hill, where they planned to kill their matriarch to restore their family's honor. Little did they know that in that precise moment she would give birth to Huitzilopochtli, the god of war and main deity of the Aztecs. Born with an armor and ready to defend his mother, he defeated his brothers, dismembered his sister, and threw her limbs down the hill. The myth says that her severed head became the moon that brightens our nights.
Also, it was believed that all the flowers of the world were born from the vagina of Xochiquetzal, goddess of love, lust, and beauty. Finally, in another myth, Tlazoltéolt, goddess of lust, sex, and forbidden love, was portrayed as a cruel deity who devoured all the evil of the world, cured illnesses with medicine, and helped reduce women's pain during childbirth.
In the same way as all these female deities of Aztec cosmology are remembered as givers and carriers of magical and sexual traits, history is filled with female characters who held the meaning of origin, hope, chaos, destruction, desire, and magic in a more literal way.
While it's hard to relate directly with these mythical characters due to temporality and lack of knowledge about their complete stories, we share more in common with them than we think. These divine and intangible women show us that the most important thing we have, what makes us exist, and what reminds us that failing is part of life, lies there, beneath our skin.
Broken Isn't Bad is a series of illustrations that depict women who have been hurt, but have learned that it's impossible to destroy all that exists inside them. Also, it portrays that inner desire we all have, that makes us who we are.
Through black and white strokes that contrast with a white background, these illustrations combine simplicity with the vastness of the universe and a mythical world. From illustrations of legs embracing a beautiful flower bouquet, to women with a galaxy beneath their skin, these illustrations extoll femininity in an erotic, dark, and cosmic way.
The passions and drives women hide under their skin aren't exclusively related to their sexual appetite, but to their desire to grow and fully experience their lives, without caring about what people think. True beauty and sensuality can only be reflected through truthful and honest eyes.
The characters featured in each illustration represent all those things many women don't dare express, but have felt at some point in their lives. In that moment, we face our real self, and we get to know our own desires, as well as our hunger for success and personal growth.
More than an interpretation, Broken Isn't Bad invites us to reflect and identify ourselves with the illustrations. Among the naked silhouettes of their bodies, the starry sky inside them, and the flowers adorning these scenarios, we find the universe that lies within us. It's a world of magic, darkness, desire, sorrow, and an invincible power that connects us with everything. That's what we hide under a skin that covers beautiful imperfections.
If you want to see more of this project, take a look at its Instagram.
Translated by María Isabel Carrasco Cara Chards