"U used 2 want me." (2020)
Oil based face paint on men's fabric handkerchiefs
Courtesy the artist
“I started working on my face after I got the Coronavirus. I wanted to continue with my drawing practice. But I work standing. I couldn’t do it. I was just too weak. And I was starting to feel really crazy inside ‘cause I couldn’t make anything.
‘Face painting is a part of my [clowning] practice, but it’s usually not something I think of outside of doing a performance. [By printing my face on handkerchieves] I was able to move into another body of work that I was actually able to do. So that’s been the main thing that I’ve been doing. During and after the virus. It’s part of my practice to make something every day. The truth is this is an emotion-based practice that allows me to process whatever I’m feeling. In a creative way. And then wash it off. And send it down the drain. I print it to preserve it. I take a photograph of it as a way to remember. And to share [on social media]. Because I feel like not everybody turns to creative expression when they’re struggling. Or when they’re emotionally exhausted. Or lonely. Or any other kinds of feelings. But I know that some people who don’t do that themselves, turn to other people’s creative practices to help them.”
Emmanuel Muñoz in conversation with Heidi Rider (Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art, 2021)