In my exhibition Bravado, I intended to better understand my own inclinations to create male beauty and identify the original displays of immortalized male beauty in historical art. Each artwork recreates an ancient Greek statue as a large-scale charcoal and gesso painting, including pieces from the Classical Greek period, the Hellenistic period, and subsequent Roman copies of destroyed Greek originals. The chosen works exemplify how the most esteemed Ancient Grecian art (dating between 400 B.C.E and the early decades of A.D) centered around representations of heroic muscular Caucasian male bodies.
The Bravado exhibition is a cathartic and visceral series where these statues are first lovingly recreated, and then torn apart and deconstructed with aggressive charcoal strokes intermixed with heavy gesso dripping. As the series progresses, I employ increasingly more intense applications of charcoal on each of the sculptures’ surfaces. These statues are displayed with this degree of destruction and tragedy because they embody a form of beauty that cannot continue to be the only representation of male beauty.
These representations perpetuate a universal depiction of beauty that rejects the majority of men. My own love for these sculptures and the attractive figures they depict is destroyed in the series in acknowledgment of the idealizations that are proudly displayed over others, and the dangers of choosing to use art to glorify a singular male body image above all others. The final product is several statues fluctuating between their existence as aged sculptures and as young attractive men. It is on this visual timeline that I represent the slow development of male beauty ideals becoming engrained into universal archetypes, and how quickly these ideas can fall apart, as well as our decision in the 21st century to refuse to accept only a singular perspective of what creates an honorable and beautiful man.
About the artist
I am a Colorado-born artist studying Interactive Media and Arts Practice, and I am fascinated by the human body and how anatomy intersects with textured landscapes in fine arts and digital media. My work studies how human systems and bodies can make up narratives and dimensional compositions, as well as how human identity is preserved in historical art.
On view: Tuesday April 9th – Friday April 12th, 2019