Last-Minute Art-Inspired Halloween Costumes

Don’t be a Jim.

Bo Barlett, Halloween (2016). Courtesy of Ameringer | McEnery | Yohe.

It’s official: The spookiest time of the year is here. But if you’re anything like us, you’ve been enjoying your fall activities—apple picking, leaf peeping, and the like—so much that Halloween snuck up on you, again.

Don’t let this be another year where you slap on a nametag and call it a day, and instead take inspiration from the art world for your latest costume. Don’t be a Jim. To that end, we’ve rounded up a few ideas to bring your Halloween A-game and impress even the most jaded of trick-or-treaters.

Celebrity, With a Twist

Bradley Theodore, Karl and Anna Face Off (Diptych) (2016). Courtesy of ACA Galleries.

Bradley Theodore, Karl and Anna Face Off (Diptych) (2016). Courtesy of ACA Galleries.

For the couple looking for a celebrity spin, why not take a cue from Bradley Theodore’s Karl and Anna Face Off? Theodore is a street artist known for his bright and colorful works featuring iconic stars rendered in skeletal forms. Pick your favorite celebrity couple or duo and build on their signature look, then take the costume up a notch by adding color body paint as seen above. It’s a pretty easy move, and can takes an overdone look to the next level.

Politician, With a Twist

Saint Hoax, Donna Trumpette (2016). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

Saint Hoax, Donna Trumpette (2016). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

It’s election year (like we could forget, ugh) so you’re sure to see your fair share of Hillary Clintons and Donald Trumps running around the city. A way to stand out from the crowd could be to reinterpret his or her look and add a different spin to your candidate of choice, like Saint Hoax did with his painting Donna Trumpette. Recognized for his “popliterally incorrect” paintings, Saint Hoax often takes a well-known figure public figure and paints them in a satirical light. This is a costume idea that will definitely take a bit more time to execute, but come on, the end result will be worth it.

Animal Human Hybrid

Daniel Sueiras Fanjul, Natural Selection - Retrato Ilustre C - Chimpanzee Wearing A Pink Coat (2016). Courtesy of Urbane Art Gallery.

Daniel Sueiras Fanjul, Natural Selection – Retrato Ilustre C – Chimpanzee Wearing A Pink Coat (2016). Courtesy of Urbane Art Gallery.

Personally, we love animals just as much as we love dressing up, so why not combine our two loves and be a dressed-up animal? When we saw Daniel Sueiras Fanjul’s Natural Selection – Retrato Ilustre C – Chimpanzee Wearing A Pink Coat, we couldn’t help but be inspired. His “Natural Selection” series focuses on Dawin’s discoveries on evolution, and grabs our attention almost immediately by giving animals a human persona. Don your favorite animal mask and your best party attire and you’re ready for the night—if anyone asks any questions, just say you’re from the future, or something.

Marie-Antoinette Mob

Tyler Shields, Let Them Eat Cake (2015). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

Tyler Shields, Let Them Eat Cake (2015). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

For the truly ambitious, there’s always the group costume. If you have a lot of friends and are will to go all out, do an over-the-top theme a la Marie Antoinette. In Tyler ShieldsLet Them Eat Cake photograph, he uses modern technology to reinterpret classic historical settings—making us wonder what actually went on when the painter wasn’t watching. This is one of those costumes that gains strength in numbers, and freaks people out a little bit with sheer volume. And hey, if you’re realizing that don’t really have the time to plan for an elaborate costume this year, it’s never too early to start planning for next time…

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