This Student's Painting Makes an Excellent Point About Consent

January 26th 2017

Nineteen-year-old Emma Krenzer's art project went viral this this week. Highlighting, not just her talent as an artist, but the long lasting effects of consent.

As she wrote on Twitter, "the prompt for the project was to create some sort of map, I created a map of human touch on another human's body and its lasting impact."

Project Emma Krenzer - twitter.com

Krezmer, who is a student at Nebraska Wesleyan University took a photo of her friend and then finger painted over it, the night that she returned from the Washington, D.C. Women's March. She told BuzzFeed News that she wanted to depict touches from different people in her life.

Krezmer's project makes a strong point about the importance of consent. "I made this project largely for myself to visualize the lasting impact that touch can have on an individual."

keyEmma Krenzer - twitter.com

Her project went viral on Twitter. Over 122,000 people retweeted it and nearly 300,000 people liked it. Krezmer attributes her projects popularity to it's honesty. "I think openness and vulnerability of it is allowing people to make themselves open and vulnerable as well," she told Buzzfeed.

The legend on the side of the map explains what each color represents. The purple is from her mom, the blue from her dad, etc. The red touches are from someone who she "told no."

The reactions to the image were emotional; the picture captured a feeling difficult to discuss or express in words. “Some people told me they burst into tears after viewing the piece and others thanked me repeatedly for creating it," Krezmer told BuzzFeed. "I really don’t have the words to describe how it makes me feel.”

​Consent is more than just respecting a person when they say “no,” it’s also making sure that they verbally say "yes" to being touched.

This Twitter user who responded to Krezmer's tweet definitely got the message: If consent is not clear, don't touch.

Comment @erinbooger - twitter.com

Krezmer’s piece is extremely relevant to her college setting. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, about one in every five women is sexually assaulted while in college and 90 percent of assault victims do not report the assault.

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