The springboard for this piece came from looking at Chuck Close's 'Big Self-Portrait'. I did a smaller version which was to serve as a template for the final work, but didn't have the space until now to see it through. The small version was in included in a group show, 'Nonsense', curated by Jill Wickenheisser at Seton Hall Law.
As an artist, I sometimes struggle with the idea of 'am I good enough?' The attitude Close conveys in his work embodies confidence and defiance at a time when Clement Greenberg had said there's only one thing an artist can't do any more and that's paint a portrait. While I would like to channel more of Close's self-assurance in my process, the image I wanted to create with this piece was one of naive wonder. The image comes from my class portrait sometime around 2nd or 3rd grade, with these colorful cellular blobs making their way in from previous paintings. The eyes I incorporated were Spongebob's; being that I have two young sons, and that seemed to be all that was on our tv for awhile.
|Chuck Close's 'Big Self-Portrait'|