World Bodypainting Festival models turn into living works of art in Austria

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Hope it comes off in the wash! Models transform into living alien-like works of art at the World Bodypainting Festival

  • Over 300 artists from 45 nations participate in the three-day competition based at Lake Wörthersee, Austria
  • Around 1,500 participants compete in the different brush and sponge, airbrush and special effects categories
  • Over the years, the festival has given a major platform to this art form which 20 years ago was unknown to most people.

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Bright, daring and sometimes downright bizarre designs are on display at the World Bodypainting Festival.

More than 300 artists from 45 nations are involved in the three-day competition based on at Lake Wörthersee in southern Austria, which kicked off on Friday.

Around 1,500 participants compete in the brush and sponge, airbrush and special effects categories.

The festival also includes exhibitions and parties where guests dance in spectacular costumes and painted bodies.

Over the years, the festival has given a major platform to this art form which 20 years ago was unknown.

Visitors can take a close look at the entire design and painting process at the event, which also includes huge bands, street performances, stage numbers, art installations and international DJs.

Square off: These models seem to face each other at the Austrian body painting festival which attracts hundreds of visitors

Impressive: Silver necklaces are draped over this model's curved headdress which is mostly painted in turquoise

Awesome: Silver necklaces are draped over this model’s curved headdress which is mostly painted in turquoise

All Colors: With a white body background, the artist here is able to use a range of different hues to bring the design to life

All Colors: With a white body background, the artist here is able to use a range of different hues to bring the design to life

Scary: Covered in a lot of blue, this woman appears to have a guitar head sticking out of her skull in this image

Scary: Covered in a lot of blue, this woman appears to have a guitar head sticking out of her skull in this image

Underwater influence: This model appears to have taken inspiration from the sea and turned her head into an octopus-like creation

Underwater influence: This model appears to have taken inspiration from the sea and turned her head into an octopus-like creation

Flowers and wildlife helped evoke the design of the model

This creature appears to be a type of supernatural being

Natural world: Flowers and wildlife helped evoke the model’s design (left) while the creature on the right appears to be a type of supernatural being

Queen Lion: Africa's largest cat is at the center of this display with orange highlights in this image and a drawing of a lion

Queen Lion: Africa’s largest cat is at the center of this display with orange highlights in this image and a drawing of a lion

Sun Relief: An object with metal spacers was fashioned into a sort of hat for this male model who highlighted his facial hair with gold paint

Sun Relief: An object with metal spacers was fashioned into a sort of hat for this male model who highlighted his facial hair with gold paint

Flight of Life: Butterflies or maybe sunflowers inspired this artist to create this bright and colorful design

Flight of Life: Butterflies or maybe sunflowers inspired this artist to create this bright and colorful design

Dedication: artists spend several hours preparing their models for the world's largest body painting competition

Dedication: artists spend several hours preparing their models for the world’s largest body painting competition

Multicolored: artists use ultraviolet light paint on models at the World Bodypainting Festival in Poertschach

Multicolored: artists use ultraviolet light paint on models at the World Bodypainting Festival in Poertschach

Two-Way Color: This model has many earthy colors painted on her body as well as gold on her belly

Two-Way Color: This model has many earthy colors painted on her body as well as gold on her belly

Full body color: Austrian festival model has stunning designs on her body and also incredibly large hair

Full body color: Austrian festival model has stunning designs on her body and incredibly large hair

Human obsession: around 1,500 participants compete in the brush and sponge, airbrush and special effects categories, including this woman who was inspired by the eye

Human obsession: around 1,500 participants compete in the brush and sponge, airbrush and special effects categories, including this woman who was inspired by the eye

Smoking: Resurrecting like a phoenix from its ashes or just a red bird from another world, this model is certainly a highlight of the event

Smoking: Resurrecting like a phoenix from its ashes or just a red bird from another world, this model is certainly a highlight of the event


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