‘Keith,’ by artist Chuck Close, at the St. Louis Art Museum

(Click on the photograph to see a larger picture on a separate picture page.)

This hyper-realist acrylic painting by celebrated artist Chuck Close is one of the best contemporary pieces in the great St. Louis Art Museum. I have been coming back year after year to the museum, and I still find new things to see in his representation of a photo of his friend, Keith. I love how he shows the pores of Keith’s face.

Here is how the museum describes this work. It is one of seven in a series, completed in 1970: “Rendered in varying shades of gray, ‘Keith’ is one of seven large-scale paintings that Chuck Close created of his family and friends between 1968 and 1970. The artist worked from a photograph, using a grid, an airbrush, and a small amount of black paint to transfer the details of the photo onto a sizable canvas. Through the massive scale of the work, Close transforms the familiar face of his friend into a monumental presence. The artist stays true to varying areas of focus and blur in the photograph, while carefully depicting minute facial features, such as pores, wrinkles, and hairs.”


Not your typical vac shop

I always seem to discover something new, peculiar, and definitely quirky in south Seattle, particularly the industrial area called SoDo. The Vac Shop eluded my attention for years, until today. How could I have missed this? I have no idea what creative inspirations lie behind these pieces, and I do not think it matters. And, Bibles are apparently in the shop too. Full service, it appears. (Click on each photo for a larger, full-sized image on a separate page.)