The title of this piece is an old saying, meaning "remember your mortality."
The piece is basically based on pure imagery, like the rest of the pieces for the show; mixing soft pretty things with dark strange things. Here you have sickness and death symbolized by the Plague Doctors, and beauty and vitality represented with the girl.
It is this kind of juxtaposition that we find captivating, and is the primary inspiration behind the Beautiful Monstrosities
show. You can find this contrast in the Victorian era – an underlining darkness in an era of aesthetic beauty, which is present in most of the pieces for the show.
Poverty and Child Labor led to a high death rate for children, and in turn made post mortem
photos popular at the time. The heavy use of opium as a household "cure-all" in Laudanum
, and the many ill uses of arsenic: from edible complexion wafers
to the deadly pigment of Emerald and Paris Green used in wallpaper and clothing; and the accidental use of the poison as sugar, leading to hundreds ill and several deaths… all while sitting proper and keeping the corsets tight.
The original artwork will be featured in the upcoming show 'Beautiful Monstrosities' at 323East Gallery on Satuday July 9, 2011.