Are your favourite women the brown, happy and carefree kind? Monica Kim Garza is the artist for you then.
Monica Kim Garza is a Mexican-Korean artist championing body-positivity and the meaningful representation of all kinds of brown women. Her 30,000 Instagram followers are frequently treated to images of curvy brown women celebrating their bodies and lives in the best way possible — by just going about living them joyously.
One of her works, for example, shows three brown women raising their arms to the sky in glee as they ride a tandem bicycle in the sun. Several of her works depict women with rounded, curvy thighs and arms, and show them eating (kimchi and tacos), lounging, exercising or hanging out with each other. And that’s when you also realise that that’s part of the where the appeal of her work lies: it’s so rare that you get to see these happy, positive depictions of brown women just hanging out with each other or on their own when they aren’t stretched out languorously on a bed or whatever.
In an interview with Remezla, Garza says that she’s inspired by her Korean mother and Latino father, which she accepts does lead to some awkward moments when they’re dealing with the pieces that have heavier sexual overtones.
Interestingly, the same interview points out that while Garza doesn’t look like the women in her paintings, and is quite thin in real life, she does view them as self-portraits, and says that they still reflect a lot of her own reality.
Check out her Instagram here.