Built Like This: A Positive Body Image And Anti-Bullying Exhibition By Daisy Ruiz

Published on August 01, 2022, 3:42 pm
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Casita Maria presents the positive body image and anti-bullying exhibition Built Like This by Bronx-bred Chicana Illustrator Daisy Ruiz.

The exhibition features 27 largescale comic book pages on view in the Casita Maria Gallery September 15, 2022 – March 10, 2023.

Built Like This is written and illustrated by Daisy Ruiz and edited by Jamila Rowser. The narrative follows the life of Gordita, a young girl being bullied and body shamed at school, which causes low self-esteem. But through the support of her friends and guidance counselor, she is learning to love who she is.

A free opening celebration will be held on Thursday, September 15, 2022, between the hours of 05:30 p.m. and 08:00 p.m. with dj music by hellotones, at the Casita Maria Gallery at 928 Simpson Street, 6th floor, Bronx, NY 10459. Refreshments will be served. 

At Casita Maria, we also, use the gallery as a teaching tool, and this year we are addressing one of the outcomes of remote learning during the pandemic: deepening inequity in literacy rates. Casita Maria’s focus on new and fun ways to learn to read, write and love oneself through the creative arts will help to offset this inequity.

Ruiz’ work, with relatable content for young people, is the perfect vehicle to help Casita Maria with this mission. Her work is influenced by a Bronx upbringing, and she says it “reimagines my experiences and surroundings through a lens of enchantment. My work persists to see the beauty and magic of everyday life in the hood despite the grim realities of low-income living. My illustrations often tap into the nostalgia of the early 2000’s, capturing the fashion, music, and aura of my youth. I use my illustrations to tell the story of nuanced moments of my upbringing in the Bronx, narrating experiences of body shaming in adolescence and the search for acceptance within white-dominated alternative interests.”

Daisy Ruiz, better known online as @Draizys, is a Bronx-bred Illustrator, Founder and Creative Director of award-winning compilation zine Deadass Tho NYC, and one-third of Women of Color art collective Spicy Mango Comics. Her illustrations take inspiration from her five year-long Scene phase, her East Coast Chicana upbringing, and everyday NYC living, to name a few. Built Like This will be released separately in fall 2022 through Black Josei Press.

Funding for Built Like This is provided by the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs through the Cultural Development Fund.

For more information about the exhibition, please contact marketing@casitamaria.org.


Casita Maria

About Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education

Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education is the first and oldest Latino 501(c)(3) charity in NYC, founded in 1934.

The South Bronx-based community arts and educational organization presents diverse, contemporary visual and performing arts and education programming for all ages.

Casita Maria creates a safe and welcoming community, enriching and uplifting youth and families towards success, through shared cultural, art and educational experiences and programs.


Casita Maria Center For Arts & Education
928 Simpson Street
Bronx, NY 10459

Tel.: 718-589-2230

Email: info@casitamaria.org

Jonas Bronck is the pseudonym under which we publish and manage the content and operations of The Bronx Daily.™ | Bronx.com - the largest daily news publication in the borough of "the" Bronx with over 1.5 million annual readers. Publishing under the alias Jonas Bronck is our humble way of paying tribute to the person, whose name lives on in the name of our beloved borough.