Bruises as Art Make Us Flinch

Other than papercuts, nothing makes us cringe like a bad bruise so when Riikka Hyvönen captured some winners and made them colossal artworks, you better believe we were squinting our eyes to see less of it. Referring to the black and blue series aptly called ‘Roller Derby Kisses,’ the Helsinki-based artist takes photographs of bruises on roller derby girls and turns them into large scale hyper-realist paintings. According to her, “I believe these images are charged with mental strength. They show that the player’s bodies can take the hits yet overcome the pain and still continue to play… Obviously, I am objectifying these women totally. But I am doing it exactly the way they objectify themselves: their big and strong bums are assets and to be carried with pride.” Just to be clear, roller derby girls are immensely proud of their high contact sport and in fact, wear their bruise as badge of honor often showing it off on the internet. To commemorate it as such, Hyvönen titles each painting after the comments they themselves post online, emojis and all such as “Violet! You’re turning violet, Violet! #derbybruise #ouch #hematoma” and our favorite “A Little Scratch Developed Into This Motherf**ker!” If only all artworks were so gloriously titled.