Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown above a bed in a modern apartment. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown above a kitchen table. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown above a staircase. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown above a comfy looking sofa. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown in an elegant bathroom. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
Mockup of “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner, shown on a rustic wall next to a swing. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
A beautiful dark haired woman sits on a soft bedside the painting “Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.
“Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture” by contemporary art activist Layla Messner. An abstract expressionist painting of a gold phoenix egg in a crucible, surrounded by red, orange, and black. Acrylic on canvas, 20 x 20 inches.

Rising from the Ashes of Purity Culture

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In my childhood, I was exposed to a startling combination of sexual exploitation and purity culture brainwashing. Despite six years of therapy and four years of full-time abuse healing, I was oblivious to the effects of toxic purity culture (especially paired with childhood sexual abuse), until I started having purity culture nightmares.

After going a bunch of research and self-work, I still needed something more to process my feelings and free myself from the toxic effects of purity culture and rape culture, which are deeply intertwined. 

I created this painting to liberate myself - and to help free other women. 

The rebirth of our sexual freedom is depicted as a phoenix egg about to hatch, within a crucible. The painting depicts an alchemical transformation, chain-breaking magic. 

36 x 36, acrylic on gallery canvas