I Need More Space by Mosqueando
The illustration above is entitled “I Need More Space”, and is by Gio, a 20 year old Brazilian artist whose chromatically cosmic illustrations focus on Black female empowerment and representation.
Gio goes by the name ‘Mosqueando’, and has been illustrating since she was a kid. The social criticism in her artwork reflects a change in her own experiences and perceptions. “I mainly drew White people growing up, because those around me would consider the illustration beautiful, and so I felt rewarded. The problem was that it didn’t make sense to draw people who didn’t represent me, without any concept or message behind the illustrations,” she explains.
“Instead, I turned to the issue of the lack of Black representation in the illustration scene that I have always followed, and how much it affected me. Because it’s not only in the arts that Black representation is almost non-existent, it’s everywhere.”
For Gio, the lack of Black representation is damaging; it is a violation of self-esteem.
“Having no positive representations to feel pride in as Black people, hurts deeply,” she says. “Through Mosqueando, I can represent Black girls, Black female empowerment. Black girls are beautiful, and they need to know that.”