Chuck Close Self-Portrait

image for Chuck Close Self-Portrait
Exhibition Label
Chuck Close has focused on large-scale heads for most of his long career as an artist, varying his materials, but not his efforts, to make a person’s face into an overwhelming, impersonal presence. He has made portraits of friends, family members, and models for many years, but he has also created a number of self-portraits. Close suffered a collapsed spinal artery in 1988, leaving him a quadriplegic, and in 1989—the year this self-portrait was made—he was finding new ways to make his artworks. For a long time, he only used photographs as reference material for his paintings and drawings, but by the late 1970s, he saw their potential to stand on their own as art. He was particularly drawn to large-format Polaroids and hyper-real images, like this one, where viewers may find themselves overwhelmed by the size and the visual information provided in the composite image.
The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges that, in 2017, several women accused Chuck Close of sexual harassment. The museum recognizes the positive and negative impacts that individuals represented in our collections have had on history.
Durante su larga carrera, Chuck Close se ha dedicado sobre todo a trabajar cabezas a gran escala, variando sus materiales pero no su intención de convertir la cara de cada individuo en una presencia impersonal y abrumadora. Ha realizado numerosos retratos de amistades, familiares y modelos, pero también varios autorretratos. En 1988 Close sufrió una trombosis de la arteria espinal que lo dejó cuadripléjico. En 1989, año de este autorretrato, estaba precisamente buscando nuevas maneras de poder hacer sus obras. Por mucho tiempo había utilizado las fotografías solo como material de referencia para pinturas y dibujos, pero hacia finales de la década de 1970 vio su potencial como medio artístico. Le gustaban sobre todo las Polaroids y las imágenes hiperrealistas de gran formato, como esta, ante la cual el espectador podría sentirse abrumado por el tamaño y la información visual que comunica la composición multiparte.
La National Portrait Gallery es consciente de que en 2017 varias mujeres acusaron a Chuck Close de acoso sexual. El museo reconoce los impactos positivos o negativos que hayan podido tener en la historia las figuras representadas en nuestra colección.
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
© Chuck Close, courtesy Pace MacGill, NYC
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
1989
Object number
NPG.92.125
Artist
Chuck Close, born 5 Jul 1940
Sitter
Chuck Close, born 5 Jul 1940
Topic
Costume\Dress Accessory\Eyeglasses
Personal Attribute\Facial Hair\Beard
Self-portrait
Chuck Close: Visual Arts\Artist
Chuck Close: Male
Chuck Close: Visual Arts\Artist\Painter\Portraitist
Chuck Close: Education\Educator\Professor\University
Chuck Close: Visual Arts\Art Instructor
Chuck Close: Rome Prize
Portrait
Medium
Dye diffusion transfer prints
Dimensions
Overall Dimensions: 273.2cm x 219cm (107 9/16" x 86 1/4"), Estimate
National Portrait Gallery
Type
Photograph