Colorful wooden “pixels” converge to create face masks

Rather than carve a sculpture out of one material, Gil Bruvel slowly builds his masterpieces out of numerous parts. The Texas-based artist’s ongoing project, The Mask Series, features large-scale sculptures of human faces, all of which are made from assembling colored wood blocks of varying sizes.

From afar, these portraits look very realistic, but the closer you get to the piece, the more pixelated it becomes. Bruvel achieves an impressive level of detail by mixing a range of different sized pieces of wood. The larger blocks form the periphery of the mask, while the smaller, thinner pieces are used to create the eyes, nose, and lips.

As a result of the tactile quality of the sculptures, when light hits the surface, it brings out the contours of the faces and creates shadows under the nose and jaw. Most of these pieces have enigmatic expressions that are difficult to decipher, while others clearly smile or frown. However, all the masks have their eyes closed, giving the impression of having been captured in a moment of contentment or tranquility.

To see more of Bruvel’s amazing sculptures follow the artist on Instagram to keep up with his latest projects.