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The devil is not always in the details.
Even if you look closely at one of Cristina Jobs’ babies, you’ll find it hard to tell that it is made out of silicone.
It cries and wants a dummy, needs a nappy change after being fed and has a chest that rises and falls with each breath.
“It’s those details that the eye can hardly perceive, like capillaries, the veins, that tell us that it is something that has life,” says the Spanish hyperrealistic sculptor and creator of the brand Babyclon when she welcomes Euronews Culture into her studio in Deltebre, northeastern Spain.
When Cristina started out she worked alone but now she has a group of talented people working in her studio. Their team of seven can make about 20-25 babies per month.
“It’s all completely handmade and customisable,” explains Cristina.
The average value of one of her babies is €2,000, but the orders range from €1,500 to €8,000 depending on the request.
Going beyond realism
The world of artistic and special effects makeup was a stepping stone for Cristina into the world of hyperrealism but she did not initially expect to get into the world of silicone dolls.
“Babies? In silicone? Who buys this?” was Cristina’s first reaction when a collector advised her to turn her talent to making babies.
“I came from a special effects background,” Cristina adds, “which is supposed to be freaky people who make zombie monsters. But this thing (hyperrealistic babies) seemed to me to cross that line… But what I discovered when I started in this sector is that, behind it, there was a very beautiful sector.”
Cristina noticed a lack of professional technique in the baby-making market and decided to use her special effects experience to take her products to the next level.
Her creations “became something that surpassed the hyperrealism that was known at that time” and Cristina wants to push her models even further.
“We are moving towards artificial intelligence,” explains Cristina, talking about an upcoming project. “Physical objects that are unable to create an interaction with a person end up becoming boring and monotonous. That’s why I’ve decided to implement AI in babies.”
Beyond babies: special effects and film
Cristina’s incredible creations aren’t limited to silicone babies, she also works on special effects for films via her company ClonFactory.
“The nice thing about special effects is that every time you make a new film, it’s something you’ve never done before because even if you have done, for example, a lot of leg wounds, it’s not the same actor, the actor isn’t going to handle it the same way, it’s not going to be in the same context,” says Cristina.
As well as wounds, injuries and special effects make-up, she also makes models and sculptures for film and media. One particular piece brought her a lot of international attention:
“Avatar was a key design. It went viral worldwide. We even made the news in India. It was like, overnight, having ten thousand emails in my inbox. It was tremendous. I was living on a cloud,” she says.
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Despite her busy schedule as an entrepreneur, Cristina also makes time for personal artistic projects as she believes they’re an important outlet.
“Getting into the art sector as a hyperrealistic sculptor was something that I really needed, because I had been working for many years, since I started with special effects, always working on commissions… I felt this need to create what I wanted because I wanted, and with the message I wanted.”
Under the artistic name Cristina Jobs, her art work tackles topics related to motherhood, feminism and education.
“I have quite a rebellious background and unfair situations in society move me… I need to externalise them.”
In one project, outside of the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid, sits one of Cristina’s works of art: a giant, realistic-looking baby crying, calling for the need for a new law that protects mothers who breastfeed in public.
“And the baby will not stop crying until he gets it,” she concludes.
Watch the video above to discover Cristina Jobs’ striking hyperrealistic babies and creatures.