Even though “selfies” are a relatively new phenomenon, self-portrature among artists and craftspeople has a very long history. Floyd’s Jacksonville Center for the Arts is joining that tradition by offering an exhibit presenting self-portraits created by regional artists and crafts people.
This 2014 themed Hayloft Gallery exhibition opens to the public on Friday, October 3, at the same time the Breezeway Gallery opens with photography and craft/art works first displayed at the 8th Annual Floyd Livestock and County Fair, held earlier in September. Meet the Artist receptions for both gallery shows will be held in The Jax Community Room from 5 to 8 PM on Saturday, October 11.
Just as modern selfies were inspired by technology (smaller, hand-held/cellphone cameras), the classical self-portrait found its audience about the time mirrors were able to be made more reliable, and less expensive. Historians believe that Jan van Eyck’s 1433 “Portrait of a Man in a Turban” might be one of the earliest self-portraits painted on a panel or board instead of cloth. But it wasn’t until the Renaissance when self-portraiture became more widely popular.
Self-portraits can be representational (as if the artist is “sitting” for his portrait to be painted) or can be a composite that suggests the artist. They range from sculptural representations to photographs; from images of reflections or distortions of the artist, to the face of the artist on a mythic or historic figure (either three-dimensional or two). Piccasso, famously, created many self-portraits with his image in many disguises and incarnations, as he chronicled his artistic persona throughout his career. Many women artists created self-portraits, especially of themselves at the easel. Historians believe that so many women artists are self-represented because, until the 19th century women were excluded from life drawing training, and so found large-format creations depicting the human figure quite difficult. Their preferred alternative was to use their own, clothed and nude bodies as “life drawing training” and thus created “selfies.”
The showcase at Floyd’s Jacksonville Center offers both men and women, composite and representational, 2-dimensional and 3. Artists included in this show are:
Anibal Zog Miranda
Marsha Slopey Paulekas
Gretchen St. Lawerance
Jacksonville Center organizers hope that friends, neighbors, and visitors will join in the fun during the show’s run through Thanksgiving, and upload their own “selfies” to The Jax Facebook page, at https://www.facebook.com/JaxForArts.
The Breezeway Show includes representatives who participated in three of the competitive craft/art categories at the County Fair: Photography; Art & Craft; and Livestock Photography. If residents and vistors missed the Fair, this is the opportunity to see some of what was on show at that event.