Caption is here.
I have found that
this phrase/approach helps free me from the pressures of
per-conceived notions about the person in front of me. I seek to paint without judgment, to respond with beginner’s mind. Though I do make calculations and measurements, instead of focusing on likeness alone, I work quickly (as if a goalkeeper re acting to a shot on goal) and apply the various mediums with loose gestural movements or chance procedures, allowing the portrait to be an expression of my body. Thus allowing other things to enter the picture that are not intended but rather appear.
I work with the portrait format in series to explore a broad range of topics and/or issues such as place, identity, awareness and community. The conceptual framework for each series acts as a catalyst for the portraits and links the works together by a statement or a question (such as: “commodore”, “hyphen”, “a parent”, or “the investors”).
The title of a series directs the process of choosing models that will share with one another a common situation, identity on paper, or particular life experience. Because of the size of the face in the paintings, they have an ability to be noticed from a distance, enticing the viewer to have a closer look both at the surface and the concept of the series or title. When viewed in such a context, portraits in collection may have the potential to represent and/or create less obvious connections, may become bridges to and from our various and diverse experiences, and can even be a call to our humanity.
© 2014 Benjamin M. Betsalel – All rights reserved.