Art Illustration

The Subversive And Surreal World of Ruth Marten

American artist Ruth Marten makes really smart artworks drawing on antique etchings. Marten’s art is often about fashion, feminine beauty and and desire. Her work is inspired by the imagery of the old prints she gets in flea markets — as well as that she literally uses ink and watercolours to alter the found engravings.

Ruth Marten started out as a tattoo artist, working on the fringes of the art world in her Native New York, long before tattooing became the socially acceptable, ubiquitous phenomena it is today. She then moved to working on paper and a long and prolific period working as an illustrator for a diverse range of clients including Jean Paul Goude, the renowned French graphic designer, producing illustrations for books, magazines and album covers. She then started to make and exhibit her own, very particular, works on paper.


Her prowess makes it nearly impossible to determine where the archival material leaves off and her imaginings begin. Her talent lies in intuitively taking clues from the original artwork, to twist it delightfully.


In each fussy seat, Marten poses a woman’s disengaged body part, not bloody lumps of flesh, mind you,  but bejeweled, well-coiffed, lipsticked and elegantly accessorized features.






All Images © Anastasia Vasilakis

source:Todd Hosfelt’s Weblog

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