Anamorphic Portrait of Nikki, 2007
oil and pieces of teeth on canvas 36 x 36 inches
I painted two versions of this painting plus several other anamorphic drawings. What I liked about anamorphic images is that when viewed directly they are unintelligible, but when viewed indirectly, either with a special mirror or at a certain angle, the image becomes clear. In this painting a cone-shaped mirror is required to see the image. Even with the mirror, the image can only be seen when looking directly at the point of the cone, and a slight shift to the left or right severely distorts the image. Anamorphic images felt like a metaphor for the different cultural stances in our society. Whether framed as left and right or conservative and liberal, groups see their causes clearly because they are looking from their own perspective, while opposing groups cannot see ‘the image’ because they are looking from a different perspective. Too often it seams one requires a ‘special mirror’ to make sense of an opposing group’s argument, and that nothing can be seen directly and objectively.
The reflection of the painting in a cone-shaped mirror reveals the hidden portrait