THE BLOG
11/19/2010 04:13 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

"Personal Identities: Contemporary Portraits" (PHOTOS)

"Personal Identities: Contemporary Portraits," curated by Michael Schwager for the University Art Gallery at Sonoma State University, hits the art exhibition trifecta. First, it proves that as long as Earth sustains human life, then sitters will furnish inspiration for portrait painters. Second, it shows that the genre is not only vibrant, pliable, and relevant, but that it can continue to contribute significantly to sociopolitical, economic, technological, philosophical, and, of course, humanistic discourses. And third, it shows that strong, interesting, and topical exhibitions can originate from a state-sponsored school, which, given the current budgetary climate, is no mean feat. Dissecting the intergenerational vigor of early 21st century portraiture, the work of these 28 artists will reacquaint viewers with such stalwarts as Chuck Close, Raymond Saunders, Francesco Clemente, Andy Warhol, Robert Arneson, Robert Bechtle, and Eric Fischl, and introduce a host of mid-career and relative newcomers. It's a visual feast that will get you to look at portraits, not to mention yourself, in entirely new ways.

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Robert Arneson, "Golden Tongue," 1991

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Robert Bechtle, "RB on De Haro Street," 2004

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Mike Brodie, "Untitled," 2007

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Chuck Close, "Self-Portrait," 1978

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Eric Fischl, "Portrait of the Artist as an Old Man," 1984

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Keith Hale, "Hard Look 11," 2007

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Gabriel Klasmer, "From - Dream Girl Yona," 2009

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Caitlin Mitchell-Dayton, "Dis-integration," 2003

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Elizabeth Peyton, "Liam and Noel, Loch Lomond," 1997

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Rigo 92, "Missile," 1992

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John Sonsini, "Byron," 2009