Body Art | Cashmere Images Diary



Basharat Bashir

By: Ghazala Fatima

Whether it is mehendi designs on hands and feet for decoration on special occasions, or painting the colors of national flags on faces and bodies to promote nationalism, or painting the body with natural colors by army soldiers to create camouflage, or to make tattoos as an element of hip hop cultivation, or body painting and piercing of various body parts in many countries as part of their culture ; this all falls under the spectrum of body art. In the art world, the term “body art” is generally described as a type of contemporary art, in which the artist uses the human body or sometimes his own body as a canvas and transforms it into a work of art. using paint or any other medium. There are different approaches to body art, some artists prefer to create it privately and then capture it in photographs or video, or it can be created “live” in front of an audience.

In some cases, body art may seem new, but in reality, it has existed in us through the ages. Body painting, a form of body art, has its roots in prehistoric art. Face painting and tattoos are also remnants of ancient art that are still used today in cultures from North America to New Zealand, while mime has its roots in the dramatic gestural arts of ancient Greece. The most contemporary types of body art are performance body art, nail art, and body statues (a type of street art).

Body art is art performed on, with, or composed of the human body. It cannot be confined to any particular style, process or medium and covers a huge range of forms including tattoos, piercings, scars and body paint. Some forms of performance art can also be included in body art. Body art is not restricted to any particular section of people or society, traditional, tribal and modern societies, all are also body art practitioners in one way or another. Like many other art forms, body art has also evolved over time and there are many artists who, instead of the canvas, use the human body as a surface for their painting (Body Painting). Works featuring the human body as painting surfaces have been exhibited in many galleries at various exhibitions around the world. Besides artists, there are many societies where painting directly on the human body is part of the culture and some people do it entirely and Solly does it for his own enjoyment.

There are many contemporary artists who have taken body art to extremes. Several performance artists have achieved fame by inflicting pain on themselves or scaring the public with heinous acts of sexuality, masochism, drug use and self-harm. These body-related disciplines, which are featured at some of the top contemporary art festivals, including specialist events like body painting festivals, as well as a number of the top contemporary art galleries, are prime examples. of the postmodernist tendency to expand the definition of art far beyond the traditionalist sphere of drawing, painting and sculpture.

Among all forms of body art, body painting becomes the most famous and fascinating art form enjoyed by most people. Body painting allows the artist to use the real human as the space for his artwork and he is allowed to paint directly on human skin. Unlike tattoos and other forms of body art, body painting is temporary, lasting several hours or sometimes up to a few weeks, and in the case of mehndi or “henna tattoos”, about two weeks. Body painting that is limited to the face is called “face painting”. Body painting is also called a form of “temporary tattoo”. Most commonly, body painting is referred to as body painting, while painting on a small area of ​​the body or more detailed work can sometimes be referred to as temporary tattoos.

Cosmetic grades are the best paints for most face and body paints, but water activated body paints are also used in some performances for easy removal and general ease of quick application. For lasting results, artists choose alcohol-based paints.

Illusion Body Paint

The human body can transform into an animal, plant, stone or any object by arranging one or more human bodies and painting them realistically. There are many videos on the internet that show a fascinating illusion of painted bodies taking the form of an animal. The term illusionism is used to describe a painting that creates the illusion of an actual object or scene, or a sculpture where the artist has depicted a figure so realistically that it appears to be alive. Op Art has its roots in a technique called trompe l’oeil which is French for tricking the eye.

Camouflaged body paint

Camouflage body painting is another form of body art that uses the human body and merges it with its surroundings. to make it disappear. In this dramatic form of body art, the model is camouflaged in a figurative or abstract form. The model could also be transformed into an object. One of the well-known body painting artists VilijaVitkute ​​(Swedish), has created a series of body painting and camouflage photography called “The Landscapes Within”. These works speak of the human relationship with nature, merging into it and being one with Mother Earth.

Body paint application

A convergence of several artistic movements and aesthetic elements can be seen in the body painting installation. Combinations of assemblage art, land art, fashion, set design, props, artifacts, sculpture, plants, performance, and painted bodies can be used. Camouflage and installation body paint have a very fine line separating them.

face paint

Face painting is the artistic application of non-toxic paint to a person’s face. The practice dates from the Paleolithic era and was used for ritual purposes and cultural practices. Many peoples around the world practice face painting in modern times, including the indigenous peoples of Australia, Papua New Guinea, Polynesia and Melanesia.

Some sub-Saharan African tribes use the technique in rituals and festivals, and many indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest coast of North America now use it ceremonially, having also used it for hunting and war. In India, it is used in folk dances and temple festivals, such as in Kathakali performances, and Mehndi designs are used at weddings. It is also used by Japanese geishas and Chinese opera singers.

Face painting has become an art form around the world, with painters showing their creations at festivals, competitions and periodicals. Actors and clowns use face paint to create a certain impression or to convey a particular emotion. Soldiers in combat frequently paint their faces and other exposed body parts, such as their hands, in earthy hues like green, tan, and silt to help them blend in with their surroundings.


Christopher S. Washington