Victoria Webb

Monstrous Perfection

The main focus within my work has been exploring society’s expectation for women to adhere to specific standards of beauty set by society. My practice seeks to highlight these demands for physical ‘perfection’ through the use of sculpture and installation, using a combination of materials such as soft fabric, plaster, concrete, steel and aluminium. Investigating the various ways in which we control and manipulate the bodie’s form, along with the tools used to conform to these unrealistic standards of beauty. While also incorporating the ideal of the body as object that is separated from the subject, beauty pressures being at the centre of this as a result of the demands for physical ‘perfection’.

With my final exhibition ‘Monstrous Perfection’ I have created a series of sculptures based on restrictive beauty tools such as the refashioned Victorian corset and crinoline along with other modern modification tools. Examining these tools and beauty ideals in terms of pulling, tightening, enlarging, reducing, restraint and control. All factors that contribute in achieving modern day physical ‘perfection’. These sculptures are metal based as this material for me links with the control of wire in bras, the elastic in girdles, while also including hard materials which are linked with past and modern day waist trainers and fashion corsets. The hyper-feminine sculptures are juxtaposed with a fabric installation, creating work that is reminiscent of both organic and bio-mechanical body parts through the use of metal and fabric. I have developed my designs by incorporating zips, chains, fur, lighting and other fabrics. These are all intertwined to enhance and echo some of the fashion control wear, and how powerful these flat beauty ideals can be. This sculptural installation seeks to highlight the way in which we manipulate the body’s form and contributes to the ever growing monstrous system which is our hypercritical society.