Nothing gets the point across like a good slideshow. And Nicole Tersigni is creating the ultimate one. The comedy writer pairs classical fine art with modern captions, producing timeless pictures that expose the deep roots of mansplaining. She calls it ‘Men to Avoid in Art and Life’.

“I was fed up with the way men regularly explain my own jokes to me, so I decided to make a quick joke about it,” Tersigni told Bored Panda. “I did an image search for ‘woman surrounded by men’ because that’s how that moment feels sometimes, and one of the results was a beautiful painting of a woman holding her bare boob with men crowded around her. I paired it with the caption ‘maybe if I take my tit out, they’ll stop explaining my own joke to me.’ And it eventually turned into a thread with similar classic paintings and modern captions, and people really connected with it.”

Eventually, the thread went viral and literary agent Rachel Sussman contacted Tersigni to ask if she would be interested in making it into a book. She was!

The book went on sale on August 10th and due to an article in The New York Times which called it “razor-sharp”, it sold out its first printing within 48 hours.

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Nicole Tersigni pairs classical fine art with modern captions to show just how condescending men can be

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

The series called ‘Men to Avoid in Art and Life’ has become so popular, it even got its own book

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

The hilarious situations include men sharing keen insight on the female anatomy and offering advice about horseback riding to women who actually own the horses they’re on

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Everything starts with the visuals. “The paintings come first, and I write the joke around them,” Tersigni explained. “I think the funniest jokes take details from what’s happening in the painting, so I like to start there and see what I think is happening based on their faces or the scenery.”

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

The writer looks for any paintings that have at least one man and one woman, where you can see their expressions. “You’d be surprised at how many classic paintings have women directing blank looks at men.”

She then works a joke around them. “Occasionally, I’ll have a vague idea for a joke and I’ll scroll through all my art until I find a painting that could work for it, but usually it’s the other way around.”

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

“I’ve spent many, many hours scrolling through art databases and saving any pieces that could potentially work in a huge file on my desktop called ‘Paintings’ because I’m very good at using computers.”

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Tersigni is really grateful for the overwhelmingly positive feedback she has gotten since the book was released. “I’ve had so many people sharing their own stories and experiences with me, and telling me how thankful they are for the book.”

“It’s nice to be able to laugh together about something that’s normally very frustrating.”

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

Image credits: Nicole Tersigni

People are absolutely loving the series