Barbie Girl

barbie girl36″ x 44″, Acrylic on canvas, 2005      (Collection of the Artist)

In “Barbie Girl”, The Best Man appears in the guise of a master showman and consummate illusionist. Rather than dismembering his comely assistant, which is a familiar magic trick, he physically deconstructs a shapely doll to reveal its plastic and inhuman qualities. His performance is met with thunderous applause. Still, without the explanation, it is easy to misread this painting. – ALLAN J. RYAN, Riel Benn’s “Best Man”: An Unlikely Successor to Iktomi’s Trickster Legacy, AMERICAN INDIAN ART MAGAZINE, SPRING 2010

“Barbie Girl” is based on the plastic qualities of the stars. Today you got young celebrities in there 20’s getting plastic surgery. Which to “The Best Man” is completely ridiculous. Young people look up to these so called celebrities yet these celebrities obviously are not satisfied with there looks, they obviously have low-self image issues. At the same time you got 5 year old girls playing with Barbie dolls, next thing you know, they want to look like Barbie. This disease of so called perfection is now starting at younger and younger ages. It’s not real, It’s plastic, there is no such thing as perfection. Applaud the master Illusionist, He is only out to reveal the truth. Note: This painting was made years before beheading became the norm in our world. – The Best Man