bonded with Robertson at the shoot. Both have faced uphill battles—Spirit with posting nude fine-art self-portraits and Robertson as an activist for women’s rights—by having their content and accounts repeatedly removed without explanation.
Spirit says she still gets nervous about posting images of herself online, a feeling she believes is “compounded by the censorship and the shaming that comes with it.” But on Sunday, being surrounded by other artists and creators fighting for change, she felt differently. “It was really powerful and energetic.…There was no time to be self-conscious,” she said. “Everyone’s bodies are so different and so beautiful and so rich. You just you forget about your own self-consciousness about your own body.”
Melissa, another participant, had a similarly profound experience: Posing with the group was like being awash in “a sea of humanity,” she said.
At the event Sunday morning, word circulated that Facebook had agreed to respond to the photo. However, as of that evening, over 500 recent Instagram posts had been removed from the #WeTheNipple campaign hashtag. By late Sunday night, all posts under the hashtag were restricted, but reappeared Monday afternoon. In response, NCAC posted
on Instagram: “Censorship is so often invisible,” and asked followers to “help (NCAC) make sure it stays visible this time.” For Tunick, such censorship only amplifies that which it aims to diminish. “Every pixelated nipple only succeeds in sexualizing the censored work,” he said.