ASX.TV: Chuck Close – “Self-Portraits on Paper” (2011)


29.04. – 28.05.2011 at Galerie Haas & Fuchs, Berlin

Haas & Fuchs: “Galerie Haas & Fuchs is pleased to present a solo exhibition of self-portraits on paper by the American artist Chuck Close (*1940)

Since the late 1960s Chuck Close has been concentrating on portraiture and the human face, including his own, which itself has become an iconic image. Close is renowned for working from photographs rather than from life, making monumental and classical works that are both bold in their simplicity as well as intangible, since the images often appear as if viewed through a thick layer of glass or rippling on the surface of water. The subject can seem like an apparition, dissolving and resolving when viewed from different distances.

Almost all of Close’s work is based on the use of a grid as an underlying basis for the representation of an image. This simple but surprisingly versatile structure provides the means for “a creative process that could be interrupted repeatedly without damaging the final product, in which the segmented structure was never intended to be disguised.” (Chuck Close)

Although highly renowned as a painter, Close is also a master printmaker, who has, over the course of more than 30 years, pushed the boundaries of traditional printmaking in remarkable ways. Close’s paintings are labor intensive and time consuming, and his prints even more so. While a painting can occupy Close for many months, it is not unusual for one print to take upward of two years to complete. However, far from serving as a mechanical means to replicate his painted work, his prints have been an important proving ground for his artistic activity as a whole. As Close has asserted, “Virtually everything that has happened in my unique work can be traced back to the prints.”

These prints serve as an insightful glimpse into an artist’s self-examination over the last 3 decades and confirm Close’s significant influence on self-portraiture, thus connecting him to earlier masters of the genre such as Albrecht Dürer and Rembrandt.”

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