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Ian Charles Lepine seeks to present beings trapped in a crossroads of contradiction: his interest is to display creatures whose very existence negates their very existence. These are beings at war with themselves, a war where all victories cannot but prove pyrrhic.


His sculptures are frequently accompanied by a poem in either English, French, or Italian, that seeks to give word to the tragedy intrinsic to the form.

Author: Ian Charles Lepine

Year: 2022

Title: Medusa

Technique: Ceramic clay sculpture, painted with oxides and enamel.


The myth of Medusa is riddled with contradiction. Before her metamorphosis, she was considered the most beautiful of mortals, beautiful enough to awaken the appetites of the gods. Poseidon ravished her, and somehow this caused the gods to punish the victim (or to protect her forevermore) by turning her hair into snakes.

     This piece seeks to demonstrate that contradiction between punishment and reward. The vipers attack each other, viciously biting everything in their path, sometimes even themselves. Meanwhile, Medusa is strangled by the very part of herself that insures she will not be hurt by anyone ever again.



Once thought of mortals a celestial sight:

A beauteous maid unparalleled by none;

And now, ‘tis said all of your beauty’s gone,

A lie from those who cannot stand your light.

It seems to me that fate made a mistake,

It punishèd the victim, not the monster.

Behold the justice that the gods could muster:

A metamorphosis of maid and snake.

And now you fight a war against yourself,

An asp that seeks to engulf herself in violence;

But should she win, her victory is silence,

Triumph but a prelude to more strife.

But trust contradiction of your hair

Has made you far more human than you were.


–15 August MMXXII

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