Though social media may eventually feel second nature for generations of women to come, it’s safe to say that at this present moment, we’re all still finding our feet. I’m sure no one needs reminding of the pressure that comes with Instagram’s damaging promotion of "perfection". So a welcome and necessary relief to that unattainable image is London-based illustrator Polly Nor.
You might recognise some of her work. Over the past few years she’s built a huge online fanbase with her apt, honest and brilliantly satirical interpretations of what it is to be a woman in the internet age. Nor's now-distinctive play on women’s inner demons is perhaps one of her most immediately memorable motifs, with much of her artwork taking a look at the devil within us and the literal human skin we live in. Outside of that, much of Nor's material explores the realities we often hide from public view. We’re talking everything from half-assed masturbation to compulsively surfing the internet while fully aware of its sometimes toxic nature, and our complicated relationship with boys, babies and body image. She captures a little bit of all of us and it's excellent.
Following the success of last year's show It’s Called Art Mum, Look It Up and 2015’s Sorry Grandma: An Exhibition Of Obscene Illustrations debut, Polly Nor is back with some exciting new material. This Friday, Nor’s third solo show, Airing My Dirty Laundry In Public opens at London’s Protein Studios, where she’ll be exhibiting some never-seen-before illustrations.
The new 39-part series is a continuation of Nor’s You Don’t Know Him Like I Do story, which she initially shared on her Instagram earlier this year. This particular series plays out a hauntingly funny-not-funny scenario where one woman is on the edge of a cliff, about to relinquish herself to the hands of a devious looking man-creature while her friend tries to pull her back to safety. We’ve all been there. And though Nor has kept the precise details of what to expect from this new body of work secret, we do know that the exhibition will also include an interactive installation to complement her hand-drawn art, too.
Get ready for an IRL exploration of what we are taught to keep buried within ourselves. Airing My Dirty Laundry In Public sounds like a welcome opportunity to shed the skin we're in for a moment or two and embrace our inner demons in the real world.
Airing My Dirty Laundry In Public is showing at Protein Studios, London, 12th–17th October