EMBRACED, the pamphlet book reproduced below, is one part of an overarching project exploring a concept of ‘re-authoring’, or appropriating the narratives around physical conditions and illness. Many illnesses have social implications, for example, how mental illness can lead people to be socially stigmatised and marginalised.
This project focused on scoliosis, a physical condition that causes the spine to curve from side to side. Often appearing during adolescent growth, the condition can effect the shape and proportion of body when severe enough, or left unattended. Due to the physical nature of a condition such as this, there is an impact not only on the internalized sense of body image, but there is also an implication to the socially perceived body that is often not addressed.
The visuals in this project were created by taking advantage of how data visualisation is biased - data is idealized and often seen as 'truth'. By using formulaic 3D iterations (based on data used in scoliosis studies), this created a means of representing an illness that is often misunderstood as something naturally-forming and powerful (but neither good or bad). Often this meant creating visual portraits of an individual's data, which allowed the person to be revisualised and taken out of a narrative that may perceive them as weak, broken or abnormal.
This pamphlet, part of a series of outputs, served as means of fostering doctor/ patient relationships as well as attempting to help people come to terms with an illness or physical abnormality.