John Bavaro

Fayum iPhone Portraits

This series of work represents exquisite, time-intensive "faux antiquities” rendered in the Brushes app on the Apple iPhone and then translated to real materials (wood, gel medium, beeswax, gold leaf, and resin). They are meant to emulate, or imitate the timeless Fayum portraits from the Roman period of Egypt (200 B.C. to approximately 300 C.E), which luckily exist due to the arid climate of Egypt and the burial practices of the people. The originals were plucked from the face masks of mummies, revealing an almost photographic glance into the eyes of long dead people. By re-creating similar portraits, using friends and family as models, this very new and ephemeral medium calls attention to the short-lived nature of our own existence.

As framed works, the digital pieces are printed on archival cotton paper and printed 9" x 12". The vector-based file maintains high resolution from a small original size. Recreations are then made using photo transfers on gel medium, placed on aged wood, sealed in acrylic resin, and embellished with beeswax and gold leaf.


Dylan (Board)






Evan (Board)