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Ophiophillia

Frances Goodman

1975 - Present

Ophiophillia

2014
80 x 380 x 180 cm
Acrylic nails, glue, polyurethane foam, wire, resin and hessian object

 

Commenting on consumerism, the objectification of women and the absurd standards of beauty propagated by the media, Frances Goodman uses acrylic nails to create a static sculpture that holds the potential to slither, expand and devour. The smooth surface of the tentacle-shaped arms of the sculpture reminds one of the scales seen on snakes and other reptiles.

The use of acrylic nails is seemingly innocent as they are commonly used for bodily decoration. As tools of beautification, the nails comment on the exploitative nature of contemporary media which feeds into the objectification of women. Ophiophillia, which means the love of snakes, responds to how the cosmetic industry influences perceptions of bodily perfection and manipulates women to buy into a particular (false) standard of beauty.

Resembling a knot of serpents, is Goodman urging us to consider the possible dangers of pursuing certain ideals of beauty? How far are you willing to alter your appearance to conform?

Marijke Tymbios, Mikael Kamras and Fredrik Oweson Assistant Curator of Sculpture (Zeitz MOCAA).

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