maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity
 

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity

spurred by the racism which is still rife in the united states of america, maggie michella presents ‘inside outside of culture’ – an exhibition comprising 25 images of mona lisa with different eyes originating from 5 asian countries: china, japan, korea, vietnam, and thailand. by showcasing a variety of distinct and unique eyes, the project intends to send a message to the public regarding the diversity in asia that is so often ignored. the indonesian-born, LA-based art director aims to shatter the mistaken and damaging stereotype of ‘all asians look the same’, that has been the cause of discrimination and prejudice. by using leonardo da vinci’s iconic painting, michella provokes viewers’ reaction, and invites them to gain a new perspective.

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, china 1

all images courtesy of maggie michella

 

 

as perhaps the most famous portrait in the world, da vinci’s eponymous subject has become a symbol of eurocentric, idealized, feminine beauty. with her enigmatic expression, the painting – that was created in 1503 – is known the world over and celebrated for its beauty. by using such a famous image, ‘inside the outside of culture’ prompts viewers to question their pre-existing outlook and comments on our eurocentric-focused ideals of beauty. by studying the 25 images of her altered eyes, michella celebrates and draws attention to the physical diversity of asian cultures. in addition, the exhibition also aims to encourage people to look more closely at the subtle physical differences that exist in humanity all over the world. the exhibition can be found in the artcenter college of design, pasadena, california.

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, china 2

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, japan 1

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, japan 2

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, korea 1

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, korea 2

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, thailand 1

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, thailand 2

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, vietnam 1

maggie michella changes mona lisa's eyes to highlight asian diversity designboom

mona lisa, vietnam 2


mona lisa, china – there are 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by the people’s republic of china


mona lisa, japan – native japanese people consist of ainu, bonin islanders, ryukuians, and yamato


mona lisa, korea – korea is one of the most ethnically homogeneous nations in the world, 99% of the population belongs to the same ethnic category


mona lisa, thailand – besides 24 groups of thai peoples, thailand also consists of 70 ethnic groups and seven major hill tribes


mona lisa, vietnam – vietnam has 54 different ethnic groups, each group has its own language, cultural heritage, and lifestyle

 

 

project info:

 

project name: ‘inside outside of culture’

location: artcenter college of design, 2nd floor, 950 s raymond ave, pasadena, california, the U.S.A

artist: maggie michella

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

edited by: lynne myers | designboom

  • guess what: there is not a single pair of eyes on the planet that are identical to another. That’s the beauty of humankind. Making everything about race is stupid and counter productive.

    manu says:
  • Wouldn’t the twittersphere call this “cultural appropriation”? Personally I think it’s nonsense but I find it amusing how people who make everything about race end up breaking their own rules. How is taking the artwork of an Italian and photoshopping Asian eyes do anything for the Asians or do anything for diversity? Make your own artwork and don’t leech off the popularity of an existing piece of art.

    orenji says:

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