Drop Dead Gorgeous is a visual book comprised of scientific and editorial illustrations of the Covid-19 virus sourced online during April, May and June, 2020.
In the style of colorist painting, the book sequence reveals the tension between the seductive aesthetics of the picture and its deadly pandemic effect. While scientific images transform into editorial illustrations, the book gains momentum building a narrative toward a sci-fi ending.
As Covid-19 affects every nation, some images in the book are paired with the headlines published in a variety of languages. Like photographs made of the Kennedy assassination, the Challenger disaster, and the terror of 9/11, the iconic imagery of Covid-19 collected in Drop Dead Gorgeous is informed by a world wide visual lexicon specific to this moment.
Read the review in the Boston Globe: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/07/23/arts/when-art-goes-viral/
Chantal Zakari is an artist, designer and educator; a Turkish-Levantine now residing in the Boston area. With her husband and studio partner Mike Mandel she has self-published several artist’s books under the imprint Eighteen Publications: The Turk & The Jew (1997), webAffairs (2005), Taxi Rides (2009), The State of Ata (2010), They Came to Baghdad (2012), and most recently Lockdown Archive (2015). Her work is represented in: Yale University Art of the Book Collection, Brooklyn Museum of Art, The Getty Research Institute Library, The Kinsey Institute Library, Institute of Network Cultures in Amsterdam and the Addison Gallery of American Art. Chantal has also had solo shows in Boston, Baltimore, Atlanta, Los Angeles as well as Izmir and Ankara, Turkey. She has been invited to speak nationally and internationally in Canada, the Netherlands, U.K. and Turkey. She is currently a professor of the Practice at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston at Tufts University.