Why erasing ethnicity is never the answer: a response to 'Painted Faces, The Colors of My Skin'
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In the series of photographs Painted Faces, The Colors of my Skin, Christophe D. Petyt questions what the world would be like if there were no visible distinctions between races. He has asked “what if skin colored [sic] had never been one color but multiple colors? What would we fight over?’’ Painted Faces is presented by Celebrity Photo Studios. In the images, Petyt covers his subjects in colourful paint. With the occasional help of a friend, Petyt applies paint to the faces and bodies of his models with paint strokes and splatters. Recalling his initial idea for the series, Petyt has said “as we were painting the faces of the models, we realized that once completed the model’s ethnicity disappeared.” This, he argues, leads to the images’ central focus on the themes of “Love and Peace”. Petyt’s work can open an important discussion about race as his ideas lead to questions regarding the fundamental causes of racism. Utilising the power of images to influence others, Petyt is attempting to use his work to spread a positive message and make a difference. Unfortunately, despite his good intentions, there are aspects of his work that are potentially counter-productive in the progression towards a racism-free society.
Screenshot of Celebrity Photo Studios' website
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