They say an image is worth a thousand words, but the reality is silence can sometimes be more powerful than words ever are, for better or worse.
It’s for this reason that Hungarian photographer Miklos Kiss has started a powerful photo series titled ‘Silent Consent.’
‘Many women are discriminated and abused because of their gender,’ Miklos says in the opening sentence of artist statement for Silent Consent. ‘The violent acts committed against them can be verbal, emotional, physical, sexual or economic and they are much more common than expected – and it happens more often than we know about it.’
Tired of advocacy efforts that only direct their attention to women who know they are being abused, Miklos wanted to shift the attention to women who aren’t consciously aware — or too afraid to admit to themselves or authorities — that they are being abused.
To bring to life his desire to advocate the ‘silent’ abuse, Miklos brought together subjects, each of whom represents a certain country around the world. On each of their lips the word ‘YES’ is painted on in their native language.
Miklos understands that the ‘YES’ could very well be misinterpreted towards the cause, but he wants to make very clear the project is viewed from a different perspective. In speaking to The Huffington Post, Miklos says:
The portrayed women are not standing up for themselves – with those tight lips they are actually saying yes and allowing those abuses to happen to them. My intentions were not to create an ad for this topic but to raise awareness for these silent consents.
Below are all of the images currently in the series:
Miklos hopes to further expand the project with more models as time goes on to further raise awareness. His sole goal is to do nothing more than to raise awareness to act as ‘a constant reminder that there are women who could say no but instead forced to remain silent thinking that they don’t have other options.’
Image credits: Photographs by Miklos Kiss used with permission