de Graaf, Jason

Artist Statement

Usually I make still life paintings. I do like to occasionally slip in the odd person or landscape, usually in the form of photograph or a reflection among the subject matter. It had been some time since my last portrait and I wanted to try a self portrait. I see the self portrait as a sort of crucible for an artist, so I built up some grit and went ahead. I wanted this painting to be as honest and direct as I could make it, but with an awareness of the history of the art of portraiture. With a nod to Jan Van Eyck’s “Portrait of a Man in a Red Turban” I chose to portray myself directly staring at the viewer, wearing headphones because that is what’s usually on my head as I paint.

Biography

  • Born in Montreal, QC. Canada 1971
  • Lives and works near Vankleek Hill, Ontario, Canada

Though my paintings may appear photo-real, they are reconstructions based on photographic references, actual objects, and my imagination. My goal is to create and illusion of depth and sense of presence not found in photographs. The subjects in my paintings represent my interaction with the world, the culture and society I live in. They are artifacts from my life.

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