Portraits of Nature

As the title suggests, in the series there is a certain transgression of boundaries between pictorial genres. Usually portraiture is associated with persons, not with trees, a flower or a wave. In the Portraits of Nature the frequent use of close-ups and synecdoche, the careful attention to detail, the lively execution and sometimes an utter decontextualization are elements akin to the intimacy with the subject so essential to portraiture. This kind of approach undoubtedly harks back to Albrecht Dürer’s “Great Turf,” and to Georgia O’Keefe’s oversized flowers as well as to the work of photographers such as Imogen Cunningham and Edward Weston. I feel very comfortable inserting myself within these traditions which are currently being carried forward by noted artists in the United States and in Europe.

My paintings are based on photographs usually shot by myself. I strive to render an accurate depiction of the object, but the deeper I go into it, the deeper I reach into myself. The more I try to capture the object, the more it boosts my feelings and imagination. Therefore, I do not copy, I transform. This is strikingly evident in the use of color whose arbitrariness creates a sharp contrast with the realist form. In the Portraits of Nature reality remains recognizable yet enriched by intensely subjective representations. The paintings in this series offer a collection of images that stand out for their unique visual poetry. No apologies.

Alberto Jorge Carol

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