I want to look like Cleopatra
c-print on acrylic, paper
“I want to look like Cleopatra” is a series of twelve digital photographs diptychs that question in a playful way the image of historical figures in the collective imaginary. Taking Cleopatra as a case in point, the artist looked at the features of her face - the real features found on historical representations of the last Ptolemaic ruler and the fictional features found in most peplums produced by Hollywood in the past decades. Kosmatopoulos worked with four plastic surgeons to whom she gave an images of the actual pharaoh as portrayed on coins of that era and ask them to do a "consultation" of Cleopatra’s face to suggest all the surgical interventions she would need to look like one of the 21st century actresses that played her role in movies. Each doctor took the real Cleopatra as a patient and proposed ways to “correct” her face, erasing her Greek-Macedonian features to make her look like the Caucasian woman in pharaonic clothes that defines her in our global contemporary culture.