Angelique Houtkamp Skulls

Mexican Boy & Like Me You’ll Be: Angelique Houtkamp

According to Houtkamp’s website, the artist also designs and decorates human skulls that are constructed from plaster. There is limited information in regards to these particular creations, although Houtkamp claims that the “Day of the Dead Festival and the Hallstatt Skulls” have become a source of inspiration.

One could argue that Houtkamp effectively combines elements from the Festival of the Dead with European traditions or practises. The image to the left features a skull with dark curvy eyebrows and a moustache, which are juxtaposed with vibrant illustrations. These visual elements may replicate certain characteristics from the Day of the Dead and the Mexican culture.

The Hallstatt skulls from Austria and the Mexican Sugars Skulls may feature similar practises, which both combine the skull with attractive or illustrative compositions. Perhaps these two particular styles or practises allow the spectator to abandon their fears or uncertainties surrounding death. The intricate designs may allow one to view death as a beautiful and un confronting subject.

Both Anqelique’s creations and the Sugar skulls use other materials to construct the shape, which also establishes different styles, textures or compositions. Perhaps these manufactured materials combine the subject of death with ‘commercialism’.

Outre Gallery. “Angelique Houtkamp.” Outre Gallery (Accessed 9/5/12)

Houtkamp, Anqelique. “Info and Artwork.” Anqelique Houtkamp

Quigley, Christine. Skulls and Skeletons: Human Bone Collections and Accumulations.  North Carolina McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2001 p.146-155

Brandes, Stanley, Iconography in Mexico’s Day of the Dead: Origins and Meaning, Ethnohistory; Spring, 1998, Vol. 45 Issue 2, p181-218, 38p.

Image Citations: 

Wurzeltod Blog, 

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