Dayan’s sitters often appear with their lips gently parted, a poignant gesture that evokes the passionate susurrations of prayer as much as the carnal expression of sexual pleasure. The nuanced parallels Dayan sets up between different experiences of ecstasy—whether of the spirit or the flesh—are reflected in the characteristics of her chosen medium. The transparent watercolor pigment allows her to build up thin washes to create the overall effect of a stain, and imparts the figures with luminosity. In what is perhaps a happy accident, the paper begins to crinkle and crease along the boundaries of pigment and untouched paper. In pieces like OLGA (2105) and RACHEL (2015), this makes the portraits appear almost three-dimensional—they seem to be pushing out of the bounds of the page, emerging from the moment of ecstasy they’ve just experienced. In these instances when the medium fuses with the subject matter, the work serves its most powerful message: these women are not bound to anyone or anything.