Today’s post presents another variation in my exploration of the self portrait. (See Self Portrait – Photo Therapy, Merged Self Portrait, Combination Portrait, Three Views, Self Portrait – Revisited, Big Self Portrait, Engaged, Self Portrait in Three Quarters.)
Yesterday’s self portrait (It Was Inevitable) connected my ‘self’ with my impression of my brother’s self. (My brother Mike is older than me; he is autistic, very low functioning and nonverbal.) This is an accurate portrayal of me since I feel inextricably linked to him (even though we’ve never ever communicated, and I haven’t seen him in a few years). It is even more accurate, since I seem to be occluded by his shadow.
The portrait below reverses the roll of my ‘self’ and the part of me concerned with my brother. This time his square-jawed shadow peers out from behind the angled view of my face. I look toward him as he looks directly at the viewer.
The first view of this portrait gives an impression of a slightly cross-eyed person as seen in full face. Then a profile or two become apparent. The larger nose, coupled with the oval shape of half a pair of glasses reveal a face turned toward the blue shadow. The straight vertical line ending in a small bump, when coupled with the chin and the rounded top of the head, flatten the plane into the paper forming a silhouette facing to the right. This line and bump combination also form the nose of the shadow face, although a great deal of squinting is needed to gel that aspect of the portrait.
This painting has a lot to say.