Wednesday, April 30, 2008


During the week of special classes called March Intensive a group of students explored the life and work of one of America's icons of modern art, Chuck Close, with their community volunteer, Elisabeth Gordon. Ms. Gordon is the Arts Program Coordinator at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. She writes:

"Close is best-known for his monumental portraits of himself and his friends that can be as large as 8 feet by 8 feet. His style has evolved from hyper-realism to more abstraction, based on the concept of pixilation. At the height of his artistic career, Close was stricken with a collapsed artery to his brain, which paralyzed much of his body. He has been able to overcome his disabilities and is still working and creating artwork despite being confined to a wheelchair.

"Students in the March Intensive class watched a video about his life and artistic process; visited the Hood Museum, where they studied two prints by Chuck Close; then worked with artist Kathy Parsonnet to paint their own portraits in Close's style. The results were extraordinary. The range of work includes realistic portraits and more abstract, pixilated versions, in black and white and in bold colors." The photos show two student paintings which were displayed in the HHS atrium.