It's About Time (Kids)

Janine Antoni. Butterfly Kisses. 1996—1999

Kids: Janine Antoni. Butterfly Kisses. 1996-99 (English)

(American, born Bahamas, 1964) Cover Girl Thick Lash mascara on paper, 29 3/4 x 30" (75.6 x 76.2 cm). Purchase. © 2006 Janine Antoni Audio courtesy of Acoustiguide

Narrator: Just about everyone has used their body to make art sometime. Did you ever finger paint? Or make a handprint in a piece of wet clay? Or send someone your love in a letter by putting on lipstick, then kissing the paper?

Janine Antoni thinks of lots of ways to make art with her body. This piece is called Butterfly Kisses.

Ever give someone a butterfly kiss?

[Soft fluttering]

Here’s how: First, bring your eye very close to someone’s skin, so you are just touching it with your eyelashes…. Now, open and close your eye quickly a few times, brushing the skin with your lashes. It feels soft. And it tickles….


That’s a butterfly kiss!

Janine Antoni made this entire picture with butterfly kisses. It was hard work.


Well, look at all those marks!

To make them, Antoni put lots of eye makeup on her lashes. Then, she gave the paper butterfly kisses. On one side, she made 1,254 winks with her left eye. And on the other, 1,254 winks with her right eye. She had to put on more mascara often, so it wouldn’t dry out. She made twenty winks at a time, three times a day – the most she felt she could do. Even so, it took her over a month to make this picture!

1 / 6