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Aida Silvestri


Unsterile Clinic

In Unsterile Clinic the artist Aida Silvestri is inspired by personal experience where she started an in-depth investigation into Female Genital Mutilation by interviewing East African women in London affected by this cruel procedure. After comparing the stories of women from Eritrea, Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia, Kenya and Djibouti, reflecting on her own personal experience and conducting further research, she discovered that the majority of FGM cases in the United Kingdom are diagnosed during pregnancy or labour although a few are not diagnosed until the second or third child after undergoing unexplained caesarean sections during the earlier pregnancies.The aim of this project is to raise awareness of this procedure of the severity or what type of FGM women and girls have are encouraged to go through an early screening process before it becomes an emergency. Silvestri aesthetic approach is chosen with purpose to reduce the intensity of the subject matter. Beads and flowers are stitched onto soft leather to resemble the subjects’ skin colours in order to create the different types of FGM. These are then attached onto the mouth areas of subjects’ silhouette portraits. The leather pieces show the various stages of tissue removal where cutting took place; the portraits are accompanied by short poems from interviews highlighting their FGM experiences.

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