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The Second Skin

Visual Art

The Second Skin Poster, makeup wipes imprinted with a drag queen's makeup

"Hedwig and the Angry Inch" was a movie that changed BBQ’s view on gender, sex, relationships and self love. In the movie, there's a scene where the main character uses a piece of fabric to wipe the sweat off her face, imprinting her full makeup on it.

Through a process that involved a lot of trial and error, BBQ finally found a way to make a print of their makeup on a wet wipe in 2019. Gradually, they have built a collection of their "face". There is something very raw about the prints that reminds BBQ of the particular day, look, and moment each one is made. In a way, it's how BBQ photographs themself, and the collection is their own makeup diary. Not all of the prints come out clean and clear; sometimes they are just a blur, almost abstract, but they are equally important. The wet wipes BBQ uses to make the print sometimes get stuck to eyelashes or wig hair. Doing a full face on a drag queen requires an extraordinary amount of makeup products and more. Sometimes they use prosthetics or special effects and you can see they are left out of the print. The work is a print of a print, a painting of a painting, the second skin of a second skin.




BBQ is a drag queen from Hanoi, Vietnam. BBQ found freedom in makeup, costume and the transformation of drag. Through the art of drag, BBQ has a second chance to live their fantasies. With drag, everything is possible.

Love for makeup artistry was BBQ’s inspiration to start doing drag, but BBQ soon began to see drag as a form of protest -- a way to make noise, to have a voice, and to stand up for one’s self and for other queer kids who need to be seen and appreciated. To BBQ, drag is the best way to learn more about themself and their own culture, and to communicate with the queer comunity in Vietnam and internationally.