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Contortionist Pencil Drawings Show Bodies at Their Most Intimate

These pencil drawings will get you twisted.
All images courtesy the artist

Overlapping and contorting, there is something both disturbing and inadvertently enthralling about the doughy fleshed out pencil drawings which approach body contortions in new light. Wrapped up in one another and without a proper beginning or end, the series of colored-pencil-drawn illustrations allude to nudes and abstract art. The illustrations are relatively free of any warm-bodied features, underscoring how an artist can remove the humanity from her subject while still appealing to the human senses.


French visual artist Ingrid Maillard, who frequently works with graphite mediums and favors depictions of the human body, juxtaposes the objective angles against the pulsing racket of the mind and the working cogs of the nervous system. The artist’s Contortion series examines mainly a body at rest, depicting the recognizable linear extensions and soft curvatures, which somehow still reflect the dormant energy inside.

As the artist describes her works, the series “acts like a homage to the diversity of the human body. [I’m] deeply inspired by Mannerism. I always try to keep in mind all these small anomalies that draws the viewer’s attention. That’s why none of the bodies are [represented] in front, but in a natural position."

She also describes the practical side of things, including the specific colors used in her visuals to develop depth and provoke curiosity:

“This technique [of colored pencil on paper] forced me to draw shadows and lights as a volume, created only with lines, I studied the body as simple object with all these cures. But they are the colors I used which remind us that this shape is a body. I…used cyan, magenta, and yellow…to see the difference when you look closely at a drawing, but not when you’re farther away.”

To see more artwork from Ingrid Maillard, visit her website, here.


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