The Hilton Show
Curated by Wendy Outland
Daughters and Sons
contemporary portraits of imagined people
"Mao's Daughters and Sons", "Jefferson's Descendants", "Vivaldi's Virgins", "Her Secrets", "Leonardo's Twins", "Botticelli's Daughters", "Another Life", and "Grands of Gropius" are chapters in a larger thematic series of Daughters and Sons. The series started in the spring of 2008 and was inspired by my interest in exploring the composition and scale of contemporary portraiture within a historical contextthis one imaginary.
One of my favorite paintings from the Renaissance period is Botticelli's "Birth of Venus". I have always thought that perhaps one of Botticelli's daughters modeled as Venus. And then I decided that he probably had 3 daughters.
While painting Francesca, Sophia, and Alexandria, the 2008 summer Olympics were held in China and through the media bubble I became fascinated with the culture and history of China. After I read a New York Times article about Mao Zedong (learning more about the One Child Rule) I immediately visualized a series of portraits of the Chinese orphans that I knew in Aspen, 3 were the daughters of friends of mine. In the fall of 2008 I began the series of "Mao's Daughters and Sons". I have painted 19 girls and two boys.