Chuck Close begins with a photograph, which is then overlaid with a grid and meticulously translated, cell by cell, into paint. The photo maquettes -- French for scale model -- go from intermediary vehicles to artworks themselves thanks to an upcoming exhibition at Eykyn Maclean Gallery in New York.
The maquettes provide rare insight into an unimaginably painstaking process, illuminating the origins for every proceeding brushstroke. Aside from the self-portraits for which Close is best known, the exhibition displays photographs of cultural heavyweights including composer Philip Glass, painter Cecily Brown and artist Andres Serrano. As the head-on photographs are adapted into paintings, Close toys with the relationship between the pixel and the paint stroke, with illuminating results.