Tag Archives: portraits

How the Obama paintings differ (Six or so minor thoughts on the Obama portraits)

The latest pair of portraits of the Obamas were unveiled last week. This pair was hung in the White House, while the others went to the Smithsonian. Looking at them, I thought:

  1. All four paintings are great in many ways. They capture the subject well, they are strong images, and they are superbly painted.
  2. His paintings have an almost surreal quality to them: hers less so. That’s neither a pro nor con, just an observation.
  3. There is a contrast in the poses. Her hands add to the composition: his not as much. Her body is more engaged, his is neutral.
  4. His clothing is simple, almost austere. Hers are rich and eye catching.
  5. One thing that caught my eye was the finish. Both of his paintings have a gloss to them, while hers have a matte finish.
  6. I like how in one of her paintings, blue is in the background, while in the other, blue is in the foreground.
  7. Watching a video of the painters of White House paintings, I was struck by how painstaking the work was. It took them months and months to complete. It shows in the painting, but it is also a good reminder to me of how long a great work takes to do.

I am still thinking of them. I’ll come back her later if I have any more insights.

Thanks to this piece in Hyperallergic for the images (links) below.

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The wonderful portraits of Adam Riches


These works, one of which is shown above, are fantastic: Scribbled Portraits of Brooding Figures by Adam Riches | Colossal.

Go to Colossal for more.

 

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Women in the work of Francis Bacon

This is a terrible title for a good article of the women that Francis Bacon painted: Sex Scenes: Francis Bacon’s Bohemian Muse, Lesbian Bartender and Artist/Model – GARAGE

Besides the article, the close up photos are worth viewing: you can really get an appreciation for Bacon’s brush work in the photos.