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Polly Borland – Smudge

Entering Polly Borland’s Smudge exhibition is like entering a nightmarish Studio Ghibli theme park, only even more disturbing as the characters are constructed on top of living models.

Larger-than life portraits of half-formed almost-familiar cartoonish faces and bodies all at once invite and repel the viewer, bringing to mind Jeff Koon’s Winter Bears sculptures. Lipstick countenances drawn on flesh-coloured tights concealing models’ faces have a disarming familiarity. Frustratingly elusive allusions stare blankly at us, demanding interpretation and giving nothing away.

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