Portraits from the project SWIMMING WOMEN, total of 30 women and their personal stories about themselves and water, swimming (+ one word- what water means to you). Project supports and empowers all the women to become swimmers, no matter what they have been through, age, scars, physical appearance, health, or disease, and establishes water and swimming as a refuge and intelligent biological system in the environment of competitive society, as a "mother" with fluedly open arms of acceptance to every woman and giving to each woman´s deepness of mind and soul individual space at the same time.
Swimming Women Project establishes water and swimming as a refuge and intelligent biological system in the environment of the competitive society, as a "mother" with fluedly open arms of acceptance to every woman and giving to each woman´s deepness of mind and soul individual space at the same time. 30 women, 30 personal stories about themselves and water, swimming. How do you feel when you swim? How do you feel in contact with water? Could you express in one word what does water and swimming mean to you? ... MONIKA-JOY, KRISTYNA-FREEDOM, ARINA-SILENCE, KLARA-CHALLENGE, HELENA-LIBERATION, ANNA-PEACE, VERA-EMOTIONS. Seven women, aged from 16 to 70, seven personal stories and relationships to water and swimming. Part of personal stories written by hand intertwines with the feelings of each woman under water.
"I was diagnosed with psoriasis at the age of ten. My skin was peeling, blotchy and red. The neighborhood soon noticed. I started to feel ashamed of my body. Going to the pool relieves my shyness. In women's dressing rooms, you cannot miss the sight of a naked female body. I see different shapes, curves, scars and blemishes, but I also see confident and happy women." MONIKA (34)
"For me, swimming is absolute meditation, peace, silence, there is only me and my thoughts in the water. I cried, screamed and rejoiced many times during the swim. Swimming is also great for anxiety because you have to breathe deeply." ARINA (31)
Swimming meant a lot to me, it was my joy, my life. Until it wasn't too much. I started swimming competitively at around 7. I started self-harming around the age of 11. My whole world was falling apart and I didn't know what to do or how to stop it. I was losing not only the joy of swimming, but the overall will to live. I compared myself to everyone around me..." (Anna 16, now she does not swim competitively, but discovers meditative potential of water). Anna´s story opens a discourse of balance in biological systems; refuge-competition.