While researching the images to use in upcoming exhibition Not Welcome from my Defacing Art Project, I found this artist that imagines portraits of dictators as boys. I found this approach to representation of power and sociopolitical systems very interesting:
“My paintings reflect my interests in power, manipulation and the role of the individual in inherited belief systems. It is important for me to examine the duality of truth and falsehood throughout my work, which I do by creating ‘portraits’ which may or may not be based on real documentation.
The series ‘Boys’, in which dictators were depicted as children, looked at purity and corruption and, in particular, the notion of the ‘Innocent Child’. The series ‘Girls’ looked at the continuing media-led sexualisation of childhood and raised questions about our collusion in the deification and commodification of female child stars, from Shirley Temple to Britney Spears. Whereas the boys had to make a name for themselves as Pol Pot or Hitler, the girls were found, sought out, and their image given to them. The process of self invention, innocence and culpability touches both series differently.”
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