Performance artist Millie Brown uses her body in an uncomfortable way in order to create bright splashes of color on canvas (and sometimes clothes and people). Brown mixes colors into soy milk before regurgitating the milk onto her preferred canvas, akin to the drip-color style of Jackson Pollock. The artist first began experimenting with this method in 2005, and has since performed this act in many places, including for Lady Gaga’s 2006 video, “Excorist Interlude.” Brown, a vegan, only performs this body-exhaustive piece once per month. She fasts for 2 days before each performance so that her stomach is empty and her regurgitations purely the color of the milk she’s ingested; she can drink anywhere from one pint to four liters of liquid depending on the type of performance. The result of her performances are works of bright colors that are not obviously the products of puking.
Responses to her work have varied, ranging from laughing to crying, declarations of love, and even death threats, but Brown maintains that art is supposed to inspire powerful emotions in people. “I have an inherent desire to push my own boundaries within my art… By creating art from the very depths of my own physical being I am able to challenge people’s perception of beauty, expressing raw elements of human nature and in turn challenging myself both physically and mentally.” (via daily mail)
Photographer Jeremy Ayer and graphic designer Julien Mercier have been collaborating on a series of photographs titled “Aude” that feature a nude female exploring, or used as a decoration in, a large mansion. In some of the photographs, the female body appears to be on ornamental display, almost doll-like, and contrasted with some of the other objects on display in the mansion. Despite her nude body, the photographs are shot in such a way as to leave the female figure shrouded in a bit of mystery.
“With her pale skin, her slender body, she represents a certain ideology of beauty, as dictated by contemporary magazines. But paradoxically, the raw image remains in a direct visual language, not constrained by any commercial obligations. There is no digital manipulation which would withdraw all of her natural eroticism. In the same process, the statues whth their perfectly carved silouhettes, oppose with her curves left intact. The brutal and frontal lighting, exposes here entire body. But always fleeting, she remains inaccessible to the viewer, out of reach, in height.” (via ignant)
David Catá describes his ongoing series, “A Flor De Piel” as an autobiographical diary of which his skin is the canvas. Catá embroiders portraits of people who have influenced or marked his life – family, friends, teachers, lovers, partners – by physically marking his palm with these images. This embroidered flesh corporally represents relationships we have with each other – love and union and the pain and loss felt through separation, as well as the residual imprint of the relationship. Catá documents this action with photography and videography, imprinting his life story into various surfaces. You can check out more body-as-canvas work on his website. (via design boom)
Francesco Albano‘s human body sculptures drip, melt, hang, and often appear to be boneless – even the work primarily featuring bones is distorted and lumpy. Working with wax, polyester, latex, iron, and other materials, Albano sculpts shapes and contortions that render the erect and boundaried body flaccid and grotesque.
Albano is “interested in and influenced by a wide range of subjects from philosophical, mystical and spiritual arguments to scientific theories, from psychological studies to real life stories. Albano uses skin and bone as a critical and personal tool of expression to focus on the effect of societal pressures and psychological violence on the human body and collective conscience. More than an inner envelope the artist defines the human skin as a limit and an identity, that interacts with outer world.” He’s lived in Istanbul since 2010. (via my amp goes to 11 and galerist)
Israeli artist Ronit Bigal transforms the body into a text. For her “Body Scripture II” series, Bigal uses digital photography overlaid with Biblical text (in Hebrew) and floral ornamentation drawn with black Indian ink to create these stunning images of body calligraphy. The body is exposed and abstracted, the text contouring bodily landscapes and capturing hidden textures and unspoken eroticism. Upon close inspection, the text on the bodies is hard to read. It’s small and intricate, but the overall effect creates a visually hypnotic pattern. Bigal places the text so thoughtfully around the curves of the body that it is hard to believe the text was not drawn directly onto the subjects. Her work also leaves me curious about which passages she placed on particular body parts, and if she was deliberate in the placement.
Her Saatchi profile explains that these images “…are almost abstract and enigmatic, arousing the viewer’s curiosity to discover what are the photographed objects, what meanings lies behind the texts; and whether there is a thematic affinity between them or, perhaps are the associations purely aesthetical?” (via my modern met)
Ariana Page Russell has a hypersensitive skin condition called dermatographia that informs the bulk of her work. Her immune system releases excessive amounts of histamine. If she scratches her skin, this will cause her capillaries to dilate and welts to appear on her skin for about 30 minutes. This gives her enough time draw on her skin before photographing it, capturing a temporary inflammation. She often integrates cut-up photographs of her skin into some of her work, and even creates temporary tattoos out of these images. Russell sees the body as an index of passing time and human experience, and skin as the organ that visually reflects this transience. Russell currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.
We often think of bodies as opposed to landscapes. The figure belongs to the portrait and natural scenery to the landscape – bodies inhabit the landscape. For Carl Warner‘s series of photographs, though, the bodies make the landscape. Twisting torsos, bent limbs, crevices, and folds are given finer than the typical attention. Layering of bodies and parts with such focus on detail create landscape like images. Mountains, caverns, and valleys seem to rise out of the figures and become a land of skin. [via]
“Museum Anatomy is a collection of documentary photographs of works from museums around the world that have been recreated onto the human body. The artwork goes through a significant process until reaching the final outcome, a photograph of Chadwick, sometimes unrecognizable as a human form, with an elaborate, detailed painting covering a portion of his body. The recreated paintings of these historic portraits recapture the subjects in their own moment in history. The resulting photographs reveal a unification of art combining antiquity, history and technology in a contemporary context.”