Acrylic on paper mounted on Masonite, 57 X 46 1/2 inches
The Age of Self Reflection. The composition for The Age of Self-Reflection began as a purely formal exercise in relating complex forms of the figures to the shapes of a neutral background. The figure type is derived from Leonardo’s St. Jerome (1481) as well as Torrigiano’s terracotta St. Jerome, and of some 17th-century tenebrist paintings of old men, especially those by Caravaggio, Rembrandt, Lievens and Ribera, and finally the 1880 painting of Job by Bonnat.
The choice of figure type suggested antiquity, and as the relations of one figure to the other evolved, it was clear that a dialogue was in process. By making them identical, as made clear by the mole on the right cheek, the theme of introspection emerged. The concerns they address about a life well lived have been with us for a very long time. I experimented with this composition drawing the figures on a sheet of Rives BFK paper then gluing the paper onto a braced Masonite panel. A frame was then added and the entire structure painted using a relatively dry-brush technique. The frame was painted to match the figures and to contrast with the blue background.