9.17.2013

Turning People Into Paintings: Alexa Meade's Canvas is the Human Body!

Alexa Meade today is a recognized artist, yet not long ago she was a political science student dreaming of working for the government in Washington, sitting at a desk...Whatever you may think of her work, she is an unusual artist and nowadays that's becoming exceedingly rare.

With her, we are far away from the people who turn themselves into statues at street corners. And far away from body art performances. The way Alexa Meade treats her subjects reminds me of the way Lucien Freud handles brush strokes:





Or see this one:


For comparison, here's a typical Lucien Freud, of the more recent period:



Of course, Lucien Freud is...Lucien Freud, one of the greatest painter of the 20th century, no question about that. And he works in a conventional mean, oil painting, obtaining a 3-D effect on a 2-D medium (the canvas). Whereas Alexa Meade does the reverse: 3-D back down to 2-D when she snaps a photo of her work. Presumably, she sells her photos...

And here's the delightful TED talk she gave, watch it, you're in for a few surprises:


Her website: http://www.alexameade.com/

Is this Art with a capital A? It certainly would fall in the category of art photography, the kind where the scene to be photographed is pre-set and all the details are controlled by the photographer.

Is it a spoof on art? Maybe. But it certainly takes a special kind of talent to paint people that way. And a lot of patience on the part of the models who have to bear paint everywhere on themselves including inside their ears!

What do you think?


(Source of photograph of Lucien Freud's self portrait:  the detail is on www.medeaonline.net)

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