The Artist's Statement
Modern media feeds us the idea that happiness and success can be obtained through materialism. Beauty and fashion advertisements present special products that they say we need to look our best: injections that tighten our skin, pills that allow us to lose weight, creams that take 10 years off our faces, and implants that accentuate that “natural” beauty we have.
People are conditioned to believe that they will be happier, more confident, and have higher self-esteem with their finished appearance – disrupting their ‘natural self’– becoming less human and more of a manufactured object.
Ultimately, we find ourselves suffocated in a vicious cycle of dissatisfaction and desire for an ideal beauty that does not exist. May we break through that disruption and unveil to the world our true beautiful selves.
This series is still a work in progress. Each photograph captures a person whose appearance has been muffled by some sort of material covering them–may it be fabric, plastic, or frosting (cake icing). All items are pink; a colour perceived to be playful, feminine, and ‘happy’. Each photograph embodies an unsettling feeling with ‘pretty’ aesthetics, but a claustrophobic and suffocated composition.
Loreal Prystaj is a visual artist based in New York City and London. She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York where she received her BFA in photography. Surrounded by a thriving “fashion environment” she planned on becoming a commercial photographer but chose to take a Fine Art direction where she felt she could express her ideas more freely.
Her work often exposes the relationship between time and space, with a juxtaposition of the human form and its environment. She expresses ideas through her photography and uses the medium consistently - in installation and interactive pieces - as well as using herself as a character or form in her performance and video work.
She has participated in three solo exhibitions and over thirty group exhibitions, including MIA in Milan and selected to show with LifeFramer's travelling exhibition. Her work has been seen in galleries throughout the United States, Europe, Japan, and China, and is part of the permanent collection at the Erie Art Museum, Pennsylvania, since 2014. Prystaj’s archive of work has led to guest lecturing at accredited universities, such as NYU, FIT and Columbia, in New York. She has been awarded jury prizes from more than ten photography competitions internationally, including ArtSlant, Neutral Density, and MIFA, alongside with published widely, from My Modern Met to multiple articles in L'oeil de la Photographie.