Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Michael Costello's Gods and monsters

Last night when I was visiting my mom, she gave me an article about an artist named Michael Costello who lives and works in Boston, MA.  She thought I would enjoy his sensibility, and she was right.  His current show in Miami, Florida is called Gods and monsters.  Here's his artist's statement about it:


"No object is so ugly that, under certain conditions...it will not look beautiful, no object is so beautiful,under certain conditions, it will look ugly" Oscar Wilde

“Gods and Monsters” are influenced by the writings of Umberto Eco “The History of Beauty” and “On Ugliness”. The work speaks of the marginalization of the individual in a society based on esthetic. It is part of our cultural heritage, both philosophical and theological to acquaint all that is good with beauty and also to acquaint all that is beautiful with levels of whiteness. Due to the medieval concept that God is clarity and thus visualized as white, the cult of the celluloid goddess with her palette of paleness becomes the angel of sex.

These paintings are an unbiased presentation of those who would be called “Gods and Monsters.” Masks, wigs, wax lips and prosthetics hide the identity of the individual and at the same time recall to us the fashion of the modern world to break beauty down into a collection of body parts.

As gods or monsters, these beings are meant to inspire empathy for our universal humanness whether or not they horrify or titillate.

I don't think his sensibility is the same as mine, but I do like the way he shows the human condition.  He makes people look at bodies, no matter what shape they're in, and consider them, along with the faces of their owners.  Even if the people are wearing silly masks, you can still see their authenticity and the reality of their bodies.

I'm excited to have found his work!  Thanks, Mom!

1 comment:

  1. Mes pensées demeurent les mêmes... Beau travail