It’s the blue Penis Project. Blue is the colour of the sky. Blue is the colour of the ocean. Blue is the colour most associated with the masculine sex. It stands to reason that this Melbourne based artist and project creator chooses this particular color to paint in. And it also happens to be my favorite color. This artist paints cocks, friend’s cocks, famous cocks, and cocks from all over the world, but only in blue. Why Blue? That is the one question that he does get asked a lot.
My penis portraits encourage us to look differently at ourselves and others.
This is what he has to say: Being of Portuguese heritage I have always been obsessed with „Azulejos“ the traditional style of painting on blue ceramic tiles. These tiles are synonymous with Portuguese culture so blue paint seemed like a natural place for me to start. The use of blue also removes the connection with human flesh colors allowing the viewer to explore the paintings a little deeper and guilt free.
My penis portraits encourage us to look differently at ourselves and others. Painted in blue they become unique detailed objects – no longer censored taboos of the flesh, they are not pornographic or explicitly sensual. When you look at the work you will also notice that they are all painted from a similar profile view. This is incredibly important to the work. It sets up a consistancy across the collection but more importantly it’s a spectator view and not a selfie. This is an uncommon angle to see ourselves and helps to view the portrait more objectively.
A voyeuristic view of masculinity has always interested me as a subject matter and also in portraiture because it is such a powerful way of capturing intimate moments in time. For me, portrait painting as an art form that has a tradition associated with it which creates a very different lens through which we can look at a subject. As a viewer we usually engage with a painting on a more inquisitive level than if we are looking at the same subject in photographic form. I wanted to find a way to capture portraits of men that looked deeper into their masculinity and challenge preconceived ideas of sexual prowess as well as the notion of masculinity being measured by penis size. To me this measurement causes dysmorphia, insecurities and a disconnection with one’s sexuality.
The project is a collection of portraits depicting real, everyday people including personal friends, colleagues and submissions from all over the world. The addition of each new portrait adds weight to the overall work as the larger it grows the more powerful it becomes as an artwork that explores the beauty and individuality of male sexuality beyond the barries of race, color or stereotypes. The goal is to complete the project with one hudred portraits at which point I intend to exhibit the entire collection.
Social media has played a huge part in growing the project’s profile and the addition of fun underwear and caps printed with my paintings has helped to engage more people. The Blue Penis Project has become a celebration of masculine diversity and individuality plus just like our faces or fingerprints, no two cocks are exactly the same. They are close and dear to our identity but are rarely admired outside of sexual objectification, but so many times we see them plastered all over social media used as bait. I am hoping to change that with my paintings.
To see each addition to the one hundred blue members of this Blue Penis Project check out project_claude on instagram and maybe you can be up next.