Former Model and Photographer Team up to Shift the Way Women Are Represented in the World

An art pop-up experience, BodyThoughts arrives in Toronto February 11-21, challenging our role as both content consumers and creators.
TORONTO - Jan. 28, 2016 - PRLog -- TORONTO, ON, January 28th, 2016 - BodyThoughts arrives in Toronto, Thursday, February 11th, 2016. Running until Sunday, February 21st, 2016, at 367 King St. W., this art pop-up experience ignites the body image conversation in a new way. Originally piloted in Vancouver in October of 2015, over 500 people have experienced the show. The impact has been palpable and has pushed the founders to bring the experience to Canada's biggest city.

The duo behind BodyThoughts, photographer, Alexa Mazzarello, and former model, Erica McDonald, wanted the BodyThoughts experience to be different. The immersive, multi-medium focus invites guests to reflect and discuss the way they think about their bodies in a meditative way. Guests begin to question their own responsibility as both content consumers and creators.

McGill graduates, Erica and Alexa have designed the experience using their multidisciplinary backgrounds and personal experiences, “Research has shown that seeing oneself as an object to be looked at leaves women with reduced cognitive capacity to perform in the world. Imagine if we could quanitfy the loss of female freedom and contribution? Imagine if all that mental space was freed up? What would be possible then?”

Co-founder Alexa has spent over five years behind the lens. Recognizing a persistent pattern with her clients, who were mostly women, Alexa wanted to tackle the reality of what she was hearing. Many clients were uncomfortable in their own skin, giving directions to avoid certain positions or angles. Alexa noticed a large gap in the way she saw her subjects and the way they saw themselves.

To explore this herself, Alexa stepped in front of her camera completely nude. She photographed her own body using a tripod and a trigger. “If I wanted to tackle this issue directly, and be honest about it, I had to use my own body and my own story.”

Erica McDonald, a former international model, left the fashion industry seven years ago. “I saw and experienced negative things as a model. Many girls adopt eating disorders to maintain their size zero bodies. I was one of them. I also recognized that my involvement had a direct negative impact on society. A number of my childhood friends had developed eating disorders at a young age and I didn’t want to perpetuate this reality.”

Former Advertising Executive and BodyThoughts guest, Rachel Bellotti, said this of her experience at BodyThoughts in Vancouver, "It was expansive, inclusive and curious versus perpetuating an existing state of negativity and complaint about female body image. I wasn’t given a new set of rules for how to look to be today’s superwoman, or worse, for how to be as good as or better than a man. I wasn’t reminded of the ways females have been victimized. I was invited to be me. BodyThoughts asked a simple question, and created the space to find my own truth.”

Alexa and Erica teamed up because of their desire to impact the body image conversation and shift the way women are represented in the world. Whether it’s corporate ad campaigns, social media, film, or you as an individual, BodyThoughts asks you to consider your role as a particpant in both content creation and consumption.The experience invites guests of all genders, ages, backgrounds and orientations to start a new conversation about how they experience the world through their body.

Tickets for BodyThoughts can be purchased at for $35. The show runs February 11-21 at 367 King St W, Toronto.

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About BodyThoughts

A former international model and photographer team up to design an immersive experience that shifts the way women are represented in the world through BodyThoughts. An art pop-up experience, BodyThoughts challenges our role as both content consumers and creators. Founder and photographer Alexa Mazzarello, after years behind the camera, decided to ignite a new, honest conversation with nude, natural photographs of her own body. Erica McDonald, Co-founder and a former international model, joined BodyThoughts to impact change in the way women are represented, in order to reduce harm for women and girls.

Instagram: @body.thoughts
Twitter: @body_thoughts

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Location:Toronto - Ontario - Canada
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