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spotted hyena

Gwenn Seemel
She wears the pants (Spotted hyena)
2012
acrylic on panel
10 x 10 inches

I admit it: as I made this painting, I was thinking of the subject of this portrait. I wanted to make the hyena look as sympathetic as possible. To learn more about the making of this painting, watch this vlog. Below is the text from the book Crime Against Nature that goes with this image—the book can be read and purchased here.

...other girls always have penises.

Female spotted hyenas dominate the pack. Their genitals resemble the males’ genitals, and they use their penises socially, with one individual’s erection signifying submission to another individual. This kind of genitalia tends to make both mating with males and childbirth complicated.