My Body Holds Shame as Well as Beauty


  • Kira Friesen


Body image, Mental health, Fatness, Shame, Trauma


My Body Holds Shame as Well as Beauty is about my struggle with body composition, going from being a competitive athlete to an overnight retirement due to depression, anxiety, suicidality and contracting mono. This piece displays the duality between dipping my toe into liking my body because of all the wonderful things it does for me as well as how my body has betrayed me, changed, and carries my trauma. With everybody that doesn't fit into the societal mould, it holds shame. An invisible shame. A shame that is dark, twisted and controlling. This piece also is a display of fat stomachs, a body part due to its demonization in diet and pop culture I’ve been taught to hate. Creating with my stomach as my muse airs out the shame I hold about my body. It allows me to look at myself as well as fatness in a different light. It helps create visibility to fatness and creates a dialogue of fatness in contemporary art.

Author Biography

Kira Friesen


“FIRESEN” aka Kira Friesen is a born and raised Kelowna girl. Growing up cross-country skiing at Telemark and Sovereign Lake Nordic she eventually developed into a competitive biathlete. After retiring from being a semi-professional Biathlete she had an opportunity to dive deeper into her lifelong passion of art. Her goal is to work with organizations that are near and dear to her heart. She's currently working toward her bachelor's of psychology at UBCO to become an art therapist and community studio owner.