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Performance art, self-portraits and photography merge together in Calypso’s work. Her images are catchy, Tumblr-like reminders of what society projects upon women.Some may recognize series of photographic images, where the artist lays melancholically in a heart-shaped bathtub, her brunette hair soaked in foamed water. Others might have encountered the back of a wigged blonde, with a pink curtain backdrop and the ruffled knickers to match. The phenomena of Juno Calypso lays in your newsfeed, whether you follow her or not. Her project titled Honeymoon attracted press coverage, but the character she chose to play has found her own way.
Joyce is a critical study on ‘modern concept of beauty,’ where women are pressured into a poignant construction of femininity. Calypso dives into the mystery of beauty routines, filling her scenery with “innovative” versus nostalgic objects. Where one finds the millennial pink imagery romanticized, monitored with a closer look it no longer appears as innocent. The beauty equipment pictured in her work varies from electric masks connected with wire and remote controllers to her body laboriously covered in green mud, her wig triumphantly untouched. Joyce is Calypso’s alter ego, whatever she does, the result will never be as satisfying as of that projected by the general public. Joyce is alone, in her never-ending race to outrun age and meet perfection at the finish line.
“I’m trying to make a perfect photograph of a woman trying to create a perfect vision of herself. I think that’s why people have responded so well to the work. It feels real. It’s semi simulated.” Juno Calypso graduated from London College of Communication with a bachelor in photography in 2012. Since then, her work has been featured on the covers of magazines (Foam, Port, FT Weekend) and platforms in the likes of I-D and The Guardian have mentioned the artist. Calypso’s photography projects have been a part of exhibitions in Saatchi Gallery (London), Worthing Museum (UK) and in dc3 Art Projects (Canada) to mention a few. At just 27 this young female artist has found a unique system, where she balances the favor of established art communities and the public, which vigorously reposts her images online.
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Words by Masha Mitrofanova