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Artifact: Remains of the Night

Findings from the streets, files, and hard drives of New York.


Transsexual party promoter and downtown fixture Sophia Lamar has saved eighteen years’ worth of tissues used to remove her makeup. Her favorites, below, have been mounted as a collage and installed at the gallery Asia Song Society, where a group show opened last Saturday.

“A long time ago, I was cleaning my face after a night of working in many places with different kinds of makeup. I noticed that the tissues were really beautiful. It was almost like my face was right there—the eyes, the lashes, the details. I said, ‘This belongs in an art gallery.’ Somebody said, ‘You’re crazy.’ And I said, ‘I love it.’ So I started collecting them, and two years ago, this Taiwanese guy bought two of them.

“I absolutely wear makeup every day—I can’t leave my house without eyebrows! But no matter how drunk I am, I never go to bed with any on. I clean my face with tissues, then soap and water, then put on my Retin-A, moisturizer, and Embryolisse, from a pharmacy in Paris. Then I take my vitamins, my glass of water, and go to bed.”


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