What the exhibit really succeeded at was telling the women's stories. While it might have been a little cheap to show grotesque females to get a reaction, I believe, that paired with the individuals' stories next to the photos, it became appropriate. As a woman, not only could I sympathize, but understand. While never having a severe eating disorder myself, I am obsessed with my body, as I believe most women are. And I don't mean obsessed as an egotistical term, but obsessed as in I think about how horrible I look all the time. I don't want this to be a personal whine fest, but I think it's an important issue that we all deal with, and it's important to discuss it. I remember being 6 years old and being in an outfit my mom was so excited to put me in, and all I could think about is that my belly stuck out over the pants and I thought I was fat. I didn't last an hour in this outfit. At 6 years old...which leads me to believe that it's not just our screwed up society that makes us so uber-critical. I grew up with strong (although sometimes emotionally unstable) women influences who always told me I was beautiful. No matter how often our mothers, sisters, and boyfriends tell us we're beautiful, it takes one glance at a girl in a bikini without any bulges or a reflection of ourselves in a glass door for us to go back to self-loathing land.
Needless to say, the exhibit affected me greatly. I think that it would be a good idea for anyone who has been affected by their appearance or has been in a relationship with someone with low body image to check this out. It's a good call to attention to the issue. If we have the power to try to rise above this and prioritize our thoughts better or if we unfortunately do not, it's empowering to see what these other women have been through and seeing their fight to live.