Thursday, May 21, 2009

Symbionese Suzanne

I've been wondering lately how Rafael is doing, and how his new(ish!?) venture, Alfalfa, has been going. I love the cheekiness of him as the George Lois-Muhammad Ali Saint Sebastian! I read somewhere that Muhammad Ali had to check with his spiritual advisor to make sure it was okay (as a Muslim) to be photographed as a Catholic saint.
It's tougher for women to pose as somebody [female] and still make it recognizable, I think. We were posed that problem (paint yourself as someone famous) in John Park's portrait painting class I took. The only famous women I could think of wouldn't necessarily be recognizable without their face, except for maybe Marie Antoinette or the Virgin Mary. I didn't want to do a film image, and I didn't want to do a "male gaze" portrait, so I came up with a painting of Patti Hearst in front of the SLA emblem.

Growing up in the '70s I was obsessed with her story, and in retrospect I realize how much I loved painting that logo (and I'm a little bit interested in why I left the palette as part of the painting—how po-mo of me!) I remember John Parks saying he was a little bit afraid of me during that painting critique.

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