Modernising the Traditional: Redesigning famous faces

For my final project at university I wanted to create pieces of artwork that represented women in a positive way. After a few discussions I came up with the idea of redesigning old paintings of ‘famous’ women and changing how they look by changing their race, clothes and giving them a new personality

Growing up I never saw people with the same skin tone as me in paintings. When you’re younger you look for people that in some way resemble you in the ‘beauty standards’ that around you. You see the people on TV, films and in magazines and part of you wants to look like them. You want to live their story. Its hard when no part of you looks likes them. For example growing up with Disney films I felt I could be Jasmine or Pocahontas. They had tanned skin, dark hair and eyes and that was me, while most of the other girls could be any of the princesses. It seems like something so little but when you’re younger that kind of thing matters. Looking around art galleries a large amount of the paintings have white/pale skin ladies. Think quickly of an iconic painting and she will have pale skin. With my series of illustrations I wanted to change this. The aim of project it to take parts of women from different races/ cultures and turn them into well known works of art. I want people to see that they in themselves are works of art.

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