Happiness is a warm scalpel. Fundamental Methods - PhMuseum

Happiness is a warm scalpel. Fundamental Methods

Ellen Smeets

2014 - 2021

Happiness is a warm scalpel.

-Fundamental methods-

When an ugly baby was born out of a fine looking couple, the father got suspicious. He found out that the beauty of his wife was the result of a 75.000 euro plastic surgery procedure. He filed a lawsuit against her on the basis of fraud and won 90.000 euro in damages.

Our visual society has a major impact on the way we perceive the world and how we see ourselves. The media is jam-packed with idealized images that gradually become a benchmark of the ordinary. This questions the complex relationships between the functioning of the body on the one hand and luxurious alternations to that body on the other.

At the core of my long-term project are both the perverse nature of the possibilities and extensive fields of applications available in the medical market on a global context. I am looking at the grey areas between the luxurious and necessary of these physical interventions.

By acting as an investigator, I used methods of scientific research, documentary photography and staging scènes to build a narrative where fact and fiction coexist.

The project started in 2014 and is finished recently in 2021.

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