Conceal | Reveal | Deceive
Considered the most beautiful woman in the world of the 1850s was Elisabeth, the Empress of Austria/Queen of Hungary. And she knew it. So concerned with her image that at the age of 32 she ceased to sit for state portraits, did not allow herself to be photographed, and only made public appearances from behind a hand fan raised to veil her visage.
Veiling the female body extends to various and opposite purposes. An Afghan burqa conceals a man’s property, a representation of chattel. A Victoria’s Secret nightie is fashioned to selectively reveal, entice, and evoke sexual arousal. Lingerie is worn as a display, a representation of power over the viewer, and a signal in initializing foreplay.
As in my previous bodies of works on the female form such as Barbie dolls and allegorical sculpture, my Voile series looks at the representation of women found in iconic renaissance and classical painting. I appropriate images from Botticelli, Ingres, and others from postcards sold in the gift shops of the Uffizi, Louvre, and other museums. I then blend in a digitally created vertical veil, similar to a hanging sheer curtain, with colors derived from the painting palette itself, but hyper-saturated. The veil and female form merge together, intertwined in a complex relationship about what is chaste virtue, what is beauty, what is eroticism, what is the male gaze, and how they are bound together.
All images are sublimated digital prints on high gloss aluminum, with rear float frame;
Editions of 5 and 2 APs are offered for each size