The Morning GIF: Ecce Homo

Adding another layer on top of Cecilia Giminez's … restoration.


Lorraine Murphy


Published Aug 30, 2012   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 11:56 am CDT

Here at the Daily Dot, we swap GIF images with each other every morning. Now we’re looping you in. In the Morning GIF, we feature a popular—or just plain cool—GIF we found on Reddit, Canvas, or elsewhere on the Internet.

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It’s aesthetic vs. aesthetic, amateur vs. pro, and the living vs. the dead in today’s Morning GIF.

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Irish artist and recombinant phenomenon Alan Butler is a Daily Dot favorite, having been featured in our Morning GIF (Slavoj Zizek, hot dogs, and Cthulhu? How could we resist?) as well as in our encyclopedic 25th anniversary of the GIF roundup. His psychedelic take on digital art is unique, unforgettable, and on occasion possibly seizure-inducing.

You have been warned.

This take on the infamously botched restoration of the “Ecce Homo” fresco by Elías García Martínez mashes it up with Damien Hirst’s equally notorious and possibly plagiarized diamond skull. Between the world’s worst restoration job by Cecilia Giminez and the lily-gilding coating of a real human skull with precious stones, neither object is in its original, pure form. It’s layers upon layers, and none is unambiguously an improvement. Of course, the original “Ecce Homo” was a portrait of a human face, the skull implied beneath the layers of flesh.

This GIF invites us to question what lies under the surface, and virtually ensures that we’re all going to pause for a meaningful glance in the mirror today. Make your layered choices carefully.

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*First Published: Aug 30, 2012, 7:27 am CDT