Thursday, July 11, 2013

The art of the self portrait

Why do we paint ourselves? Is it for purely practical reasons when  no other models are available? Is it because you don't have to worry about the model not turning up, fidgeting, being bored or falling asleep? Is it because you are in total control of the production, or at least think you are.
Is it an act of vanity or deception ? This is how I would like the world to see me, minus the warts. Or is it an act of self revelation where you expose yourself for all  to see? Are you the  actor, the egotist, the victim or loner or any combination? How do different people read different things into the painting?

Below are various self portraits I have painted over the years. I leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Self portrait 1972
Self portrait 1979
Self portrait 1994
Self portrait 2012
A fascinating book on this subject is " A Face to the World" written by Laura Cumming and published by Harper Press

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