Using thick layers of paint and plastic, Marie-Lou Desmeules performs “surgery” on her models, turning them into living, ephemeral (and oftentimes grotesque) canvases. With an eye for truth and a touch of satire, she explores identity, beauty, and the public image. Featured here are some of her newest works, which include creative icons such as Vincent Van Gogh and David Bowie, as well as more general archetypes—the courtesan and divorcee, for example. No matter who her subject is, or how visible they are in the public eye, Desmeules uses her paintbrush as a “scalpel” to brilliantly disfigure and dissect the exterior image, thereby uncovering a powerful—and universal—sense of human vulnerability.
Images © Marie-Lou Desmeules