Theater of Memory Series
Oil on linen
80" x 80" x 2" unframed
In Bruges, on a recent journey, I found myself entranced by the skin tones in the almost 600 year old paintings of the Flemish masters. This alchemy between pigment and subject prompted the 20th century modernist Willem de Kooning to declare "flesh was the reason that oil paint was invented."
The Flemish masters Jan van Eyck and Hans Memling began their paintings with a light colored underpainting upon which successive layers of glowing translucent oil paints were applied. Light reflects through these lustrous layers allowing us to peer into the surface of the painting. In this way oil paint seems to breathe.
My painting "Scarlet Shadow" adapts this Flemish technique onto a large scale portrait.