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[NSFW] We Can't Even Post a Picture of This Mask on Facebook

The point of Melissa Coulter’s vagina mask is to experience art and horror at the same time.

by Anya Tchoupakov
Oct 28 2016, 1:45pm

Images courtesy the artist

This article contains adult content.

For those of you at a loss for this year’s Halloween costume, consider this $480 silicone mask from San Diego-based artist Melissa Coulter. It's, well, a vagina. Coulter’s mask is on display in Think Tank’s Trap House, a sci-fi horror art show and escape room mashup that's exhibiting legendary monster and SFX makeup artists in LA. The point is to experience art and horror at the same time, and Coulter’s vaginal mask, sans eye holes, gives off that deep-seated fright.

The mask brings up a lot of questions from the viewer: Is this a feminist statement about sexual objectification? A below-the-belt gag intended to titillate? Or a particularly insightful imagination of alien life? For Coulter, it has a very personal meaning.

“A lot of hurt, anger, and pent up creativity went into it, as well as my general disgust for people. I keep hearing that this is offensive and so gross and degrading to women somehow but I see things every day that turn my stomach way more," she says. "I like this mask concept because so many people do NOT like it and really that’s the only way to get them to pay attention. We live in a time where nothing is really shocking. Everything has been made acceptable and I’m not sure that’s a good thing.”

It seems the shock value of a vagina on one’s face is a way to draw attention to our society’s immunity to, well, anything. The impeccable detail on the mask shows Coulter’s artistry and attention to detail. The mask, it seems, is every bit as complex and intricate as the real thing.

See Melissa Coulter’s vagina mask in person at Think Tank Gallery in Los Angeles Oct 8-31. Her website is coming soon. To buy this mask and see other silicone masterpieces by Melissa Coulter, visit her Etsy shop.

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