The message from Rtiiika here is very clear ‘stop telling women to smile’. I must confess to being a little bit puzzled by the sentence. I like to think that I am reasonably well acquainted with issues of gender inequality, and sensitive to the political and societal pressures, but I don’t really understand this message. It might be something that I am unaware of, and if so need to understand better.
The artwork is wonderful and adopts the characteristic long thin lines that Rtiiika uses in her work, this time in the form of her letters. The piece is capped off with a smiley in the centre in the colour of the original we are all so familiar with. There is a juxtaposition between this smiley and the message of the piece. I like the concept of messaging like this and wonder if she will do more of it.