NOTE: This exhibition contains depictions of nudity and adult themes. Viewer discretion is advised.

Faun Manne: Tattoo Me!

Faun Manne is a fashion designer and fashion illustrator who turned her hand back to her first love, fine art. After attending many small Chicago area art schools and obtaining Art Certificates, along the way participating in many group and solo shows, Faun was offered the chance to attend The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Faun received her Master of Fine Arts degree in 2020 and participated in the school’s final group show. Since then, Faun has participated in Aqua Art Miami in December of 2020 and had a solo show at Womenswork.Art in New York in June of 2020. Currently she exhibits online and in the Jones Gallery in Kansas City. Faun lives and works from her studio in the greater south Chicago area.

“Tattoo Me!”
-Faun Manne, 2020

This series is largely concerned with the inner workings of men's fantasies about women. It came about while browsing in a bookstore, where I found a wonderful, colorful, and well illustrated Pulp Art book from the 1940's. While entranced with the quality of art, I began to realize the portraits of women were very demeaning. They concerned men's sexual fantasies about women which were disturbing in their violent nature. Women, always beautiful and mostly half naked, were pictured being beaten, tortured and terrified in a most disturbing ways. There was even a chapter dedicated to Nazis branding and burning women at the stake. I felt that delving into such a dark place in history was the ultimate insult of the publication.

I thought to myself that this was important. That men may still fantasize this way, even though the illustrations are approximately 80 years old. Who can say that even the more “enlightened” men of this day and age do not look at a photo of a woman, or the woman herself, and fantasize in much the same way? I went about a method of showing this dark side of sexual fantasies. I chose to depict the women as completely unaware of the effect they were having on men, as a woman certainly can not fathom the depths of the male mind. I decided to stylize the women as though they were models from fashion magazines, as models are, for the most part, advertising sexuality. I decided the women must wear the illustrated fantasies as if they were garments, thus clothed in depravity. I chose background material and phrases of words from old Life, Look and Collier's magazines in order to continue the theme of the pieces. I merged a great deal of information into each piece purposefully, as well as color and pattern. I want each piece to be impactful and powerful. I utilized collage and painting, often layering image upon image, sometimes allowing images to peek through, so that as the viewer gets closer even more images appear throughout the painting.

I hoped to communicate the idea that women are powerful vehicles for men's imagination, and that this “imagination” is not always decent toward its subjects. I have presented women as “objects,” and a woman objectified is a woman stripped of her own strength. What I hoped to achieve was a feeling of darkness, yet I hoped the color, pattern and beauty of the paintings would compensate for this rather dim view of the male psyche.