Sunday, 21 August 2011

Lilly Cole by Gillian Wearing

This portrait is of Lilly Cole, who wears a porcelain mask which has been cast from her own face. Disfigured and cracked, the mask is symbolic of the idea of beauty and the pretence that surrounds the concept. Is beauty merely a mask that can be worn one day and removed the next, or attributed and just as easily withdrawn? It is a moving and sinister work, and with the porcelain mask, clothes worn and Lilly Cole's incredible red hair, it hints at the portraits painted by old masters throughout the centuries, and again making a reference to the changing ideology that surrounds the idea of what beauty is or means to behold.


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