Make Me Over, Over, Over a sculpture about make-up and beauty

Make Me Over, Over, Over is a sculpture is about expectations in our society for a woman’s appearance. It is fabricated by hand to look like a manufactured tool box, but essentially is hand fabricated as a commentary about the value that our society puts into buying newly manufactured goods.

This artwork was made in 1982. I think it is more relevant than ever. It resonates with the “me too” movement, and the contemporary discussions about a woman’s appearance. How can woman every consider themselves beautiful when images of woman in advertising and media are photo-shopped to a higher standard of perfection only obtainable with professional lighting and manipulation of the digital images.

Make Me Over, Over, Over sculpture about beauty and aging

Each time the lid of the tool box opens the inner table rotates one quarter turn to reveal a different palette of make-up or art materials. This layer shown in the photo above is a palette of eye shadow colors.

There are four sides: real eyeshadow (shown above), watercolor, make up pencils, and conte’ crayons. These are either real makeup or art materials. They are a reference to how woman are expected to draw their face, or improve their appearance with makeup. I don’t mind the idea of using makeup, but the issue in our society is that a woman’s appearance becomes a measure of their value.

How many times can a woman make themselves over and over? What happens when a woman’s appearance become the basis for their intellectual or professional capacity or ability.

Copper and brass construction with painted or nickel-plated finish. Hinge contains working light fixture visible when open or closed. This is just like a real make up mirror.

What is the toolbox that woman need to be valued, or evaluated in our society?

Each time the lid is closed the inner box rotates 1/4 turn to reveal a different side.

The four sides include: 16 eye shadows (a palette of colors), 8 watercolors (to paint your face), 6 pencils (to draw your face), and 9 gray conte crayons (no matter how many times you make yourself over eventually we all turn gray). 

5" height closed, 9.5" open; 8" width; 5.5" depth

This sculpture is available for purchase or exhibition.

Retail Price: $6,500


© Harriete Estel Berman, 1984