Body painter turns naked models into classic works of art

Breathing new life into classic art! Talented body painter hides naked models in beloved works by the likes of Pablo Picasso, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Vincent Van Gogh – so CAN you spot them?

  • Trina Merry, 40, from New York, has been working as a body painter for years 
  • She has done all kinds of projects with nude models, but one of her most impressive sees her integrating the women into classic works of art 
  • Merry is available for commissions, and has earned as much as $110,000 per piece
  • Dozens of people apply to model for her every day and she has so far worked with everyone from first-time models to tech billionaires

A body painter has brought new life to classic works of art by integrating naked models into beloved paintings, including Starry Nights by Vincent Van Gogh; Water Lilies by Claude Monet; and Les Demoiselles d’Avignon by Pablo Picasso.

Trina Merry, 40, from New York City has devoted her life to her vocation since she was literally struck by lightning when working in Hollywood in an art department – and she chose to invest her recovery time into painting humans.

Merry has travelled the world painting people into famous landmarks and locations but has now challenged herself to paint humans into famous works of art, including one of her favorite artists, Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Spot the model! A talented body painter has made naked women ‘disappear’ into classic works of art – including Starry Nights by Vincent Van Gogh – as part of a new project 


Talent: Trina Merry, 40, from New York, has been working as a body painter for years, and has recently used the work of artists like Georgia O’Keeffe (left) and Jean-Michel Basquiat (right) as inspiration 

‘Basquiat was one of the most successful artists of his time,’ said Merry.

‘He was a bold, risk-taker that used graffiti and cultural elements across his works. Even though he died young, his legacy lives on through his striking pieces. 

‘What legacy do you want to leave behind? I hope it’s one that, no matter what you do in life, the legacy you pass on is creative and inspiring.’

The artist’s unusual line of work sees dozens of people apply to model for her every day – she has so far worked with everyone from first-time models to tech billionaires.

And although most of her pieces sell for between $100 and $2,000, her top-earning commissions have netted her a staggering $110,000.

‘Working with the human body is really beautiful, it has a personal connection that other artforms have a hard time accomplishing,’ added Merry, who uses the Instagram handle @trinamerryart.

‘Most people walk past a painting in a museum but with my work, they really do stay and look. In an age where everyone is staring at their smartphones – totally disconnected – to be able to reconnect people back together is really special.

‘I just hope that my work inspires people to go do art for a living – you really can.’ 

Writing on her website, Merry explained how the work of other artists has inspired her to be more creative, saying: ‘Pablo Picasso once said, “Good artists copy, great artists steal.” 

‘Indeed, artists oftentimes utilize the works of others to inspire their next great masterpiece. By looking at artworks done in different mediums, styles, or centuries, you can take away key elements you enjoy and use it in your work. 

‘These elements may vary from themes to colors, and they can even be combined from different compositions. 

‘Although no one should directly copy another’s artwork, recycling ideas and applying your personal twist to them is encouraged. Creativity inspires creativity!’

Inspired: ‘Artists oftentimes utilize the works of others to inspire their next great masterpiece,’ Merry said of her decision to work with classic pieces (pictured: Judith Slaying Holofernes by Artemisia Gentileschi) 

Popular: The body painter is available for commission and can make as much as $110,000 per piece (pictured: a photograph of Frida Kahlo)


Something new: Merry has travelled the world painting people into famous landmarks and locations

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