(I’ve Got You) Under My Skin

(I’ve Got You) Under My Skin is the first major exhibition in Berlin by Jonathan Yeo. The British artist known internationally for his portraits and collages makes a new departure into the world of plastic surgery, basing a series of works on the theme, showcased alongside signature pieces created from pornographic magazines. 

Yeo spent 18 months observing the work of leading cosmetic surgeons in the UK and US to produce a collection of work exploring the processes and results of this fast-growing phenomenon, with canvases from the series already having been displayed to media and critical acclaim in London, (I’ve Got You) Under My Skin in Berlin features these alongside a number of previously unseen works.

Yeo invites spectators to re-imagine the traditional nude while exploring the stark realities of our contemporary obsession with cosmetic surgery. The result is a series of scientific images seen through a painter’s eye which pose questions about our aspirations, vanities, how far we are prepared to go in the pursuit of perfection, and our appointment of surgeons as sculptors of the physical form. Alongside these graphic works will be a bold new study of his current muse, actress Sienna Miller.

“For me it seemed both appropriate and necessary to exhibit these images of the flesh in Germany: a country with a more relaxed attitude to the corporeal, where the exposed body is not automatically sexualised or considered taboo. In Britain by contrast, the media and public tend to sensationalise the body, and are often unable to view it without scandal. The paintings in the Berlin show document the conscious efforts of people to distort their appearance in order to conform to societal notions of beauty; I wanted to present these intimate images in a country which would fully embrace what they represent.” (Jonathan Yeo, November 2012)