Offbeat

By Jack Williams


Some politicians have a knack of getting under people’s skin, and this shocking portrait series does just that, removing the flesh from the faces of famous world leaders.

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

The bizarre works show the likes of Donald Trump, Theresa May, Vladimir Putin and Angel Merkel without the skin on their faces.

The results are frightening: A dark red makeup of muscle and veins that still resemble some of the most recognizable faces on the planet.

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

Entitled “One Millimeter” – the depth of skin that has apparently been removed – the works were created by artists Alex Wadelton, 42, and Marcus Byrne, 41, who are based in Melbourne, Australia.

The artists hope their series will show viewers that we are all part of the same race – “the human race” – and that stripping down such powerful figures will encourage people to look beyond skin colour, gender and ethnic background.

Alex said: “It’s a well worn cliche, but it got me to thinking: What if we literally showed what was underneath that one millimeter of skin?

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

“Our world leaders have so much power, but too often they use that for the betterment of their country, and not for the future of humanity.”

The pair began mulling the idea earlier this year, and released their works on May 26.

As well as using their unique concept to change the world leaders at this year’s G7 summit, Alex and Marcus also looked further afield as a way to bring in leaders from other ethnic backgrounds.

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

Each work, the pair said, took between a day and two days to create, with Donald Trump becoming the first portrait in the series.

They see “One Millimeter” as an ongoing series, and are willing to take requests from the public, who can suggest other world leaders to undergo the same treatment.

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

For each high-resolution print sold of the leaders sold, Alex and Marcus plan to offer a percentage of sales to the United Nations Foundation.

Alex said: “The response has been brilliant.

PIC BY ALEX WADELTON AND MARCUS BYRNE / CATERS

“People have got in touch to say that it made them feel uncomfortable, made them think – and that they loved the One Millimeter concept.”