Hey, Where'd You Go? Art You Can Disappear Into
Desiree Palmen is an artist that can really get lost in her work - literally. She creates bizarre artwork of invisible people.
To create these interesting illusions, she photographs a specific location or spot, such as a bookshelf, desk scattered with papers, or even somewhere in a park. She then spends a lot of time painting a homemade suit that is made out of cotton. She paints this suit by hand, trying to meticulously match the exact colors of the background photo. Lastly, she puts the finished suit on a model who then poses in the original location and tries to blend in as much as possible into the background.
Palmen told the Sun newspaper that she got the idea for her invisible portraits from the increasing use of closed-circuit security cameras.
The reasoning behind her work is spoken about on her site : "Concern about the increasing use of identity based electronic information systems and the frequent use of surveillance cameras is one of the impulses for Desiree Palmen to create her work, which uses camouflage, as it's main focus. In photo works, videos and site-specific actions, she explores the possibilities of letting people 'dissolve' into their surroundings or to let them disappear against the background. The manipulation of clothing plays a crucial role. A shirt covers the body and then extends to cover the tabletop, confusing the contour of the body of the person wearing the shirt with the table itself. In another work, a suit is painted in such a way that when the model is in a very specific position, he/she disappears into the background. Palmen then takes pictures of these situations she creates from the ideal viewing perspective for the audience. In the actual situation, if the viewer moved one step away from this ideal view, then the function of the camouflage ceases to exist."
"People always react strongly when they see my work," Palmen said to the Sun. "They have mixed reactions - confusion, surprise and interest."
My opinion? This would be an awesome way to scare people on the street. I could be camoflauged on a park bench and when people would walk by I'd fall off the bench right in front of them. And of course this would all be videotaped so I can be on TV. And then become rich. And famous. (I am SO going to do this.)