Vermibus’ Street Interventions Show Beauty is Only Skin Deep

by Roxanne GoldbergPosted on

Berlin-based artist Vermibus shocks passersby with haunting public interventions, in which he replaces fashion advertisements with his own manipulated versions. To create the staggering, sometimes startling images, Vermibus splashes a solvent across the printed surface. The chemical reaction causes the faces and flesh of models, as well as the logos and brands they represent, to wash away. This process can be viewed in a video produced by Open Walls Gallery in Berlin.

Operating in a mode between street art and action painting, Vermibus uses the destructive action of erasing in order to create and transform. In his artist statement, Vermibus evokes “voodoo art which uses human elements like hair, or teeth to create anthropomorphic sculptures.” This sentiment is reflected back upon the viewer who is compelled to stop and look at Vermibus’ posters, such as those featuring Kate Moss in the series entitled “Unmasking Kate.” The supermodel, once a backdrop to everyday city life and an ideal of the perfect female body, is now pulled into the foreground, facing the public with raw scars and imperfections. Once used by the fashion industry as a prop to sell clothing, handbags and make-up, Kate Moss is now exploited by Vermibus to set his own agenda of rejecting beauty standards fabricated by the advertising industry.

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