This early self-portrait may have been painted after the artist’s skydiving accident, when he was experiencing his healing journey.
It is highly textured with multi-coloured blobs and layers of thickly applied paint. The artist used blue and green colour combinations, and these colours are said to have an emotionally calming effect on the artist and the viewer.
Despite the distorted and out of focus eyes and bizarre appearance, the artist has boldly used the symbolic colours (western culture) of energy, hope and optimism, namely, red, yellow and orange. These colours have been placed strategically around the canvas to strengthen its structure and keep it ‘fluid’.
The soft background tint was necessary as it allows the viewer to study this semi-abstract painting without distraction. There are complex interactions happening on the facial plane. The viewer may appreciate all the colours and shapes, as well as understanding the visual messages that the painting offers. It has high cerebral impact.
Acrylic on Masonite, late 1970s. (Cleaned and reframed.)