Self Portraits And The Evolution Of Selfies

In this paper, the theme of the presentation of self and female self-portraiture is being studied and evaluated along with certain works of art. The first work to compare is Judith Leyster’s, Self Portrait which is a Dutch Baroque painting created in 1630 with oil on canvas and is now located at the Museo de Arte Moderno, in Mexico City. The image shows Judith Leyster casually sitting and painting a violin player. The second work is, Frida Kahlo’s The Two Fridas is a Surrealist painting created in 1939 with oil on canvas and is now located at the National Gallery of Art, in Washington, DC. The Two Fridas shows two images of Frida showcasing the “old Frida” versus the “new Frida.”

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Artists have chosen to work on Self Portraits to portray how they see themselves or showcase a certain moment in their life. These two portraits show how Self Portraits are used by artist to present an introspective into their struggles and their world. Today’s ability to share anything in an instant, allows us to use Selfies as a substitute for Self Portraits. As we move into an over socialized world, how we present ourselves is even more important because it is shared with some large amounts of people at once. It is possible that we are losing touch with ourselves and our identities by allowing all of our self-portraits to be analyzed and share to the world instead of being used as a window into ourselves. The self-portrait and the selfie are two separate, though at times overlapping, efforts at establishing and embellishing a definition of one’s self. (the Iris)

Taking a look at Leyster’s, Self Portrait and you can see in the play with shadows and colors that the image is representative of the Baroque era. The main attraction in this painting is her face. You can look at her dark eyes staring back at you, and the confidence exuding from them. The way she holds the paintbrush looks like she is holding a wand and she will make magic on the canvas. It is said that she used to compare painting to making music and she shows the musician in her painting astutely showing herself in the same status. The momentary quality of the portrait and the vigorous brushwork echo the work of Frans Hals Haarlem’s most celebrated portrait painter. (National Gallery of Art) Frida’s portrays two views of herself the traditional woman that she was for her husband and the modern Frida. The colors that you see are bright and have very little shadows. The imaginary is visceral, as she shows the two hearts connect two one another. The two artists showcase their life at the moment through the self-portraits, but they differ much more the two paintings have very different color palettes and motifs. 

07 July 2022

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