Chuck Close is a painter and photographer, and one of the most celebrated artists working today. He has achieved fame through his large-scale, photorealistic portraits of himself, family and friends, and models. These paintings are constructed through a grid system, whereby each square on the canvas corresponds with a square on the reference photograph. This way of working represents the assimilation of photos into art. The resulting works are larger than life and highly focused. Close plays with scale, tone, and form to build up the images stroke by stroke, both in colour and black and white. In a similar way to Pointillist artists such as Seurat, Close’s work gains clarity the further away from it one is. Chuck Close suffers from Prosopagnosia, a condition whereby he is unable to recognise faces. By painting portraits, Close is better able to identify and remember faces. He is particularly known for his portraits of artists, having painted Robert Rauschenberg, Cindy Sherman and Richard Serra.
American, b. 1940, Washington USA. Based in New York.