Heroes, Gods and Mortals    I am fascinated with the ancient world. I love exploring ruins, following archaic roads and wondering about life in the ancient world. How would people have looked and behaved? So much of the past is so poorly understood. I peer at these beaten fragments of what was sculpted in stone and wonder. This series began with a Greek statue of Aphrodite. When I saw the photo I’d taken of her torso, the way in which stone seemed to be breathe beneath the fabric of the gown, I shot other statues in the gallery around me as if I were making portraits of living people. Later, back in my studio, I began to blend my stone portraits with portraits of modern living faces, projecting my face and bits on my and others bodies on the sculpted forms of others. It felt like a kind of possession.  For me it is important to always respect the integrity of the statue. I try to transform the images of living faces and limbs to fit the statue’s proportions, not the other way around. When I fit a modern face to an ancient sculpture, there's always a moment of real connection. It feels we are not so different. Thousands of years are like a moment.

 © 2019  Peter J Baumgartner.    

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