PLASTIC SURGERY (PRINT PROJECT)



The aim of this project was to create a collection of prints using the heat press and present them in a Spring/Summer 16 collection. As print and silhouette inspiration, I chose to research plastic surgery. This gruesome topic provided me with a lot of colorful imagery to draw from. Especially the book The Sacred Heart: An Atlas of the Body Seen Through Invasive Surgery by Max Aguilera-Hellweg was a great source of magnificent but utterly disturbing photographs of the human body during surgery. There was a strange beauty to the images, which I then translated into key shapes for my collection.

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Collaging my research material and replicating the textures with different media gave me a lot of new design ideas. It was challenging to abstract such a complex topic into prints as there were a myriad of possibilities and directions to go into. Deciding on key images and developing only certain aspects of them further was one of my main goals for this project. Additionally, I also looked at the work of the artist Orlan, who underwent plastic surgery as a form of performance to achieve a certain appearance in the name of art. Her large body of work was incredibly impressive. I mainly chose to use her self-portraits as inspiration, which she printed on top of gauze soaked in her own body fluids during surgery. This idea found its way into the materials that I chose to print onto as I used both gauze and skin-like ripped fabrics for my collection.

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The print samples were a direct translation of the ideas in my sketchbook. On the designated day of printing in the workshop, I started intermixing elements and stencils, which created unexpected and successful new results.

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The silhouettes of my Spring/Summer 16 collection draw inspiration from collaged and deconstructed scrubs and other surgery garments. The shapes are loose and allow freedom of movement and an airy breeze to reach the skin in warm weather. To tie my figures into my research, I used Manny Robertson's work Embroidered Metropolis as inspiration. I drew 'transplant patches' over certain areas of the figures to create the illusion of intended aesthetic correction.

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