Printmaker Patrick Vincent, one of the Lawrence Arts Center’s two artists in residence, is on a quest to turn as many Lawrencians into bugs as he can.
For free, residents can send Vincent their photo and the name of the bug they’d like to be, and he’ll create a print of their face on that bug’s body. Vincent gives an artist proof of the print to the subject, and keeps the linoleum carving he printed it with for himself. The plan is to use those carvings in a later installation.
Last time I checked with him, Vincent said he’d completed a number of bugs but was still hoping for more. Apparently, he says, a lot of people are kind of creeped out by the idea of seeing their face on a bug’s body ... which is part of the reason Vincent, who regularly uses animal themes in his artwork, picked bugs for this project. He says, "The theme of bugs is an invitation for people to connect with a part of the natural world that is often ignored or reviled."
I thought the project sounded fun, not creepy, and sent Vincent my own picture and request to be a praying mantis. (Praying mantises clearly are not smiley bugs, and this was the only demure picture I seem to have taken in the digital age. Vincent left the veil on, which is actually kind of funny given that female mantises have been known to eat their mates.) Here I am:
Here’s Vincent and his own bug rendition of himself, as a honeybee:
Fellow artist in residence Monika Laskowska, incidentally, went with the potato beetle for her bug portrait. To submit your photo for the Bugs project, Vincent provides more information and instructions on his website.