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Own your body boldly, is the statement artist, Ruby Subramaniam made, painted onto the bodies of 30 applicants. Women of diverse backgrounds share their personal stories in her latest project, a documentary called “Antidote: Uncovering Skin and Soul.” It was completed during her month-long residency at Rimbun Dahan. Today, Ruby shares with us her story.

H&D: Tell us all about your experience working on Antidote: Uncovering Skin and Soul.

R: The project demanded more than an artist to be present. I had to give all of myself, physically and emotionally. I prayed for wisdom to visually narrate their words into shapes and forms, painted directly on their skin. It was a meditative process, almost like a form of prayer for me.

To prepare myself mentally, I committed myself to the three things below:

1. I didn’t interact with anyone outside the project for 30 days.

2. I realised that I was more attuned to other people’s energies by cutting off meat.

3. I do daily meditation to make sure I’m emotionally prepared for the next participant the following day. The conversations I had with the participants were powerful but I needed to ground myself on a daily basis. It did take me a long time to “recover” from the emotional heaviness of the project. But it has inspired me to do so much more!

H&D: In what aspects do you wish you could do more?

R: There are many women who keep reaching out to me, hoping to get a platform to tell their stories. I wish I had the capacity, to interpret more stories into art - but I’ve also learnt that I’m human, and I need to pace myself. It is important for me to take care of myself, and my mental well-being.

TOPICS: News