Jennifer Barreto-Leyva was born on December 12, 1978 in Caracas, Venezuela. She spent her childhood and youth in the town of Los Teques, together with her parents and sister, where she received a well-rounded education full of discipline and love and was instilled with the highest values of citizenship and family at the prestigious Colegio San Jose de Tarbes, completing her education at the Private Institute of Juan XXIII.
Steered by her sense of justice, which characterizes this Sagittarian, Jennifer decided to study law at the University of Santa Maria where she graduated with a specialty in the field of Appearance-based Discrimination. This attorney and passionate writer, has dedicated herself since 1999 to the tireless fight of showing that being overweight and not achieving the ideal measurements of 36-24-36 is not a requirement for being a beautiful woman since her popular columns on www.gordos.com, www.dcglamourplus.com, www.justasbeautiful.com, www.latinalista.com and www.hechayderecha.com.ve has thousands of followers due to the human angle she takes in her articles.
Jen, as her fans call her, has been known to leave a strong impression upon Hispanic women, since being the first Latin American woman to participate in the Miss Universe Pageant for Plus-Size Women, which resulted in her winning the Popular Vote among her fellow contestants. In addition, Jennifer was the first Venezuelan to blaze the trail in competing in a competition of this kind. Her exotic beauty was always compared from early age with Bárbara Palacios, Miss Venezuela and Miss Universe 1986.
Determined to break paradigms, Jennifer has proposed that the true beauty of women is reflected through their example, showing that success and the beauty of human beings cannot be measured by size. Making her voice heard since the beginning of 2004 in different media and interviews with the most prestigious journalists, Jennifer has achieved raising awareness of plus-size women and leaving a positive message for all in Latin America. This justice-seeking diva dedicates her days to helping thousands of people, by personally providing responsible and free professional guidance on how to handle problems dealing with self-esteem, discrimination, fashion and being overweight.
Now going after new challenges, Jennifer has set out to break again the paradigms and in the process is becoming the first plus-size model of Venezuela to fight passionately in being the best representative on the international stage of extra-large girls. At the end of 2009 with a new project, producing and hosting the fashion segment totally focus on plus sizes of TV show “Ellas de noche" on Puerto Rico, never seen on TV before. If this wasn´t enough Jennifer has become into the first latina to be the cover of VOGUE Curvy on July 2010. Currently making history once again, is the Owner and Editor for the first online magazine in history in Spanish for plus size people: Belleza XL www.bellezaxl.com. Beginning 2011 she has become an Editor for Color Me Curvy Magazine http://colormecurvymag.com.
* * *
Iréné Celcer, MA, LCSW, is originally from Argentina. She holds graduate degrees in psychology from Universidad de Belgrano, Argentina, holistic psychology from Antioch University, San Francisco, and social work from Yeshiva University, NYC. She maintains a private practice in Atlanta, Georgia where she helps women conquer their eating problems and disorders. Additionally, she is a speaker and teaches seminars and workshops in the USA and overseas, as well as being a regular presence on CNN Español’s “NotiMujer” with Glenda Umana.
Her books La Tirania de Las Dietas (1994) ISBN 789507424977, Buenos Aires, Argentina: (editorial Planeta) is still current (now iInfinity Publishing) and took her to the popular Argentine television program, “Almorzando con Mirtha Legrand” in 1994. Her second book: Mujer Cuerpo ¿Dieta? La Voz de la Obsesión (Women, Their Bodies & Dieting: The Voice of an Obsession) ISBN 9508431814, Buenos Aires, Argentina, (editorial Vinciguerra), still part of the lives of Argentinean women has sold out. A few of her other publications are:
-Clarín newspaper: “La venganza de una ex gorda (The revenge of a former obese person),” Buenos Aires, June 1991
-Vertex: Revista Argentina de Psiquiatria: "An Answer to Dr. Bello on the Treatment of Anorexia Nervosa" pp. 151-153, June 1991
-Revista Uno Mismo: "Ser Gorda No Es Pecado" (It is not a Sin to be Fat). Argentinean monthly magazine. July 1991
Ms. Celcer is now working on a book for parents and teens and tweens: 99 Tips for Parenting in a World of Food, Fat, Fear, & Fun available in April 2011.
* * *
Pia Guerrero is the co-founder and co-editor of Adios Barbie. The mission of Adios Barbie is to expand the dialogue around body image to include the media’s impact on identity as it relates to race, sexual orientation, ability, gender and age. Pia is also the executive director at Sheheroes, a non-profit that highlights the stories absent from the media of exceptional career women who have overcome great obstacles to achieve success. Pia believes that an equal and just society requires frequent and accurate representations of people of all backgrounds.
Pia is the author of Work of the Mind: Media Studies Curricula for Upper Elementary Age Youth. Commissioned by the U.S. Department of Education, this curriculum aims to increase academic achievement and self-awareness through media projects that promote cultural pride, cross-cultural understanding, inclusion, and respect. Pia’s curriculum also appears in Body Outlaws: Young Women Write About Body Image and Identity (Seal Press, 2004). As a media literacy and youth development expert Pia has worked with and advised PBS, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Independent Television Service. Her writing on media and representation has appeared in such groundbreaking magazines as HUES - Hear Us Emerging Sisters, Bitch - A feminist Response to Pop Culture and After Image.
* * *
Regina José Galindo (b. 1974) was born in Guatemala City, Her work has been the subject of solo shows at Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo in México City. National Museum of Contemporay Art, Bucharest. Exit Art in N.Y.; Museum of Modern Art, Oxford; Museum voor Moderne Kunst Arnhem, Arnhem. ArtPace, San Antonio Texas, USA. La Caja Blanca, Palma de Mallorca; Fondazione Volume, Rome; Prometeo Gallery di Ida Pisani in Lucca and Milan, Italy; Le Plateau and Galerie Du Jour in Paris, France; and Contexto Arte Contemporaneo in Guatemala City.
Her work has been included in group shows like Un Idée, Une Forme, un Etre. Poésie/Politique du corporal. Migros Museum fur Gegenwartskunst, Zurich. •A Filosofia do Dinheiro - Museu da Cidade, Lisbon. Corpus. Arte in azione - Museo D'Arte Contemporanea Donna Regina - MADRE, Naples. En Privado 2. La Opción Desamable - Es Baluard, Palma de Mallorca. Estrella Levante SOS4.8 - Festival SOS, Murcia. Cinema X: I Like to Watch - mocca - Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto. Über Wut - On Rage - Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin Miradas singulares, voces plurales - Claustro de Exposiciones Palacio Provincial, Cádiz. Revolviendo la basura, Fundación Beulas, Huesca.No more bad girls? Kunsthalle Exnergasse. Viena. América Latina: arte y confrontación. Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes. México. ARTE ≠ VIDA - Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, Ciudad de México. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Museo de Bellas Arte, Bilbao. Beyond the Dust, The Archaelogical Museum, Naples. Global Feminism, Brooklyn Museum, New York. Hay algo revolucionario en esto, Sala Parpalló, Valencia, España;. Venice-Istanbul, Museum of Modern Art, Intanbul. Into Me, Out of Me, P.S.1 N.Y., Kunst-Werke Berlin and Rome. Estrecho Dudoso, Teoretica, Costa Rica. MENS mankind, S.M.A.K., Belgium. Courants Alternatifs, PARVIS, Paris and Bordeaux, France. Eretica, Palermo, Italy. Il Potere delle Donne, Galleria Civica di Arte Contemporanea, Trento, Italy. Produciendo Realidad, Lucca, Italy, etc.
She has been invited to participate in the 17th. Biennale of Sydney, The Beauty and the Distance, Sydney. Biennale of Pontevedra, Pontevedra, 2010. 10th. Habana Biennale 2009. Moscu Biennale 2007; Turbulence, III Trennial Auckland, New Zealand 2007; Otras Contemporareidades, Valencia Biennale, Valencia, Spain 2007; Timer, Triennale Bovisa. Milano 2007; I Bienal Arquitectura, Arte Paisaje Islas Canarias in 2006; II Bienal in Prague in 2005; III Bienale of Tirana, Albania in 2005; Venice Biennale in 2001, 2005 and 2009; III Bienal in Lima, Peru in 2002. She won the Golden Lion Award for young artists in the 51 Venice Biennal in 2005; a residence in ArtPace San Antonio Texas; and a grant of the Program exhibition entitled 10 Defining Experiments by cifo 2006. She has published a monography of her work by VanillaEdizioni, Italy 2006, and the book of poetry Personal e Intransmisible, editorial Coloquia, Guatemala, 1999.
* * *
Juliana Lopez May is a well-known chef in Argentina. When she finished her studies, she had excellent teachers and the chance to travel and work in various places around the world: England, France, Italy, USA, Brazil, Uruguay. In each of these countries she perfected and acquired skills, techniques, met new products and qualities, and above all, had fun doing what she loved. Juliana returned to Buenos Aires to open a restaurant in San Isidro. She also hosts programs on the Gourmet Channel, including Good Food, Naturally Juliana, 4 Ingredients 4 cooks. She was also associated in a venture geared to the learning, development and sale of healthy products. She now has a family and is a mother of two children, Benjamin and Second, to whom she devotes much of her time.
* * *
Amy Melson spent most of 2010 researching the relationship women in Buenos Aires have with their bodies. She grew up in London and having travelled extensively around Europe and to other countries in Central and South America she developed an impression over several years that attitudes are significantly different in Buenos Aires from those she was familiar with.
Amy became fascinated by the existence of such differences and through her degree course in Latin American Studies at Liverpool University she was presented with an opportunity to investigate and to try to better understand this unique relationship.
Amy will go through her findings and analyses, which are based on interviews carried out with a cross-section of women who live in Buenos Aires, and is looking forward to lively discussion about her conclusions. She will be joined for the presentation by two of the women who helped enormously with her study.
* * *
Melina Rodríguez Giles was born in Buenos Aires in 1974. She has given workshops at the School of Creative Photography (Escuela de Fotografía Creativa), attended Marcela Gásperi’s work clinic, taken Juan Travnik workshops on photographic esthetics and expression, worked at Fabiana Barreda’s work clinic, as well as at Pitonisa de Catalina León’s workshop. She has had individual exhibitions at the Boquitas Pintadas (Buenos Aires, 2005), at the Photo-gallery of the Social Sciences Faculty of UBA (University of Buenos Aires) and at the Centro Cultural General San Martín (Buenos Aires, 2002). She has also participated in numerous collective exhibits, such as at the Salón Nacional de Artes (2010); the Premio Francisco Ayerza and at the Fundación Andreani (2009); Premio Bienal de fotografía Arte x Arte (2008); Buenos Aires Photo VVV Gallery (2007); Premio Argentino de Artes Visuales - Fundación OSDE; Premio a las Artes Visuales - Fundación Federico J. Klemm (Buenos Aires, 2006); and Salón Nacional de Artes Visuales, Palais de Glace (Buenos Aires, 2006, 2004, 2003, 2002.). She has also won various awards which include the following: a mention at the Premio Argentino de Artes Visuales Fundación OSDE; 3° award at the Coca Cola Light Buenos Aires Photo Contest; Conjeturas Paradojales, en el Centro Cultural Borges, ArteBA (Buenos Aires, 2005); 2° award at the Salón Nacional, Pabellón IV (Buenos Aires, 2001), where she won third prize.
* * *
Susie Orbach is a psychotherapist, social critic and activist. She has written 11 books, including bestsellers like Fat is a Feminist Issue and On Eating. Her latest is Bodies. She was also a co-creator of the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, in addition to co-founded the Women's Therapy Centre Institute in New York. She is the convenor of AnyBody/UK Endangered Bodies.
* * *
Claudia Selser has a degree in Psychology from the University of Buenos Aires and is a journalist (Masters in Communication Sciences UNAM, Mexico). She was one of the founders of the newspaper Pagina 12 (1987), and remained creator and editor until 1995 of the weekly Psychology page every Thursday. In 1996, she served as Head of Press for UNICEF Argentina. Since 1996, she has been working as a journalist for the Argentina newspaper Clarín.
* * *
Miriam Tawil is a psychologist, member of the International Psychoanalytical Association, member of the Steering Committee - World Mediation Forum, works in private practice, as well as teaching. She is the author of ‘Fashion World: Models and Backstages’. She has participated in several national and international conferences, and is the author of various published articles and co-author of literature books.
* * *
Emilia Telese is an artist and writer based in Sussex. Born in Italy, she graduated from Fine Arts Academy in Florence in 1996. She has exhibited worldwide since 1994, including in the New Forest Pavilion at the Venice Biennale (2005), Ars Electronica (Austria), ZKM (Germany), Chashama (NYC), Centro Cultural Telemar (Rio De Janeiro), Manege (St Petersburg), Leeds City Gallery, ArtSway(New Forest) and the Freud Museum (London). Her practice includes interactive and body-responsive technology, film and live art, installation, literature and public art. Often site-specific, it deals with conscious engagement, political and social debate, non-verbal communication and the questioning and deconstruction of behaviour. During her career, she has slept in a forest; been chased by paparazzi in Venice; landed by helicopter in a Danish football field; changed her brainwave frequencies in the former stables of the Tsar of Russia in St Petersburg; shut herself in a suitcase in Southend; eaten rosaries in Sigmund Freud’s home; and built the Brighton’s Royal Pavilion out of ten tons of rice.
Emilia Telese combines her arts practice with her role as Artists' Networks Coordinator for The Artists' Information Company and work with UK and international arts organisations as a freelance specialist in professional development advice for artists. Emilia Telese is Artsway’s Associate artist scheme and is a Regional Council member of Arts Council England, South East. She teaches art economics and professional practice at a number of UK and Italian institutions, such as the Pistoletto Foundation, Biella; the Fine Art Academy in Palermo; University of the Arts, London; fabrica Gallery, Brighton.
Emilia founded artist led initiative Edible Construction Company in 2006 with Chris Biddlecombe and Guyan Porter, creating socially-engaged art in the public realm. In 1998 she helped set up the Artists’ Resource, the largest library for artists’ professional development in the South East of England, which she managed until 2004. She also produces and presents Radio Sophia, a radio programme in Italian and English language on Radio Reverb FM.
Dorina Vidoni was born in Buenos Aires in 1955. At nineteen, she launched her first designs in her hometown, a flash-forward of her present collections. That very same year she studied in the Academy of Fine Arts until she emigrated and spent the next twenty-two years living in Spain, Mexico and Italy.
The experiences she has had in her many voyages around the world, coupled with her multiethnic ancestry, inspires the trans-cultural aesthetic and spirit of her designs. During her nineteen years in Italy she studied Anthropology and obtained an MA in Psychology. As a psychologist and investigator, she gave courses, lectures and group seminars throughout Europe, focusing on all human dimensions: body, emotion and mind. Simultaneously, she published an anthology including poems written throughout her life and illustrated with her own paintings, “Neither too close, nor too far” (Writings of a quest); “Ni tan cerca, ni tan lejos” (Escritos de una búsqueda), Editorial Troquel, 1994. She then translated from English to Spanish, Michael Gazzaniga’s neuroscience book “Mind Matters”, which inspired part of her research on reality construction.
Back in Argentina, and just before launching her present firm named after her, she studied with Guillermo Roux at his well-known Argentine School of Art, while coordinating groups of multidisciplinary investigation. From 2005 to 2008, she directed Myriades 1 (myriades1.com), a cultural magazine, which reflects those meetings and depicts Dorina Vidoni´s cultural aspect of her trademark. In 2004, she presented her first collection of this new project, devoted to reconcile matter with emotion and mind, embracing surface and depth, the inner-self with the outer world through a new concept of design, which intertwines aesthetics and freedom.
Dorina Vidoni is currently living in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and she spends her free time with her three children and grandson.
* * *
Lorella Zanardo is an organizational consultant, trainer and lecturer. She writes about and takes care of issues related to women. She is a member of the Board of Directors of WIN, an international organization of professional women based in Oslo (www.winconference.net), as well as a popular speaker in international conferences about women, where she deals with the issue of sustainable reconciliation between private and professional life.
She has held senior management positions in multinational organizations both in Italy and abroad, particularly in Paris, where she has coordinated projects in Europe. She has also been a consultant and lecturer in the Eastern European Community. She has worked for a long time instigating and managing organizational changes by designing the course "The Art of Change" and managed projects regarding Diversity Management learning models in Canada and the USA. She has coordinated a Masters program in Business Ethics, has a degree in Literature with a thesis on the contemporary English theater and has also achieved a Masters in Business Administration.Additionally, she has studied acting, singing and dancing for many years, passions that continue to grow. Lastly, she is a scholar of Middle Eastern countries and has filmed a documentary in Iraq during the embargo: "Iraq before the war. "