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Since the late 1960s Chuck Close has been concentrating on portraiture and the human face in painting and photography. Close often takes his family and friends as models making monumental portraits, of whom some of the most iconic are the ones of composer Philip Glass, the ex-president Bill Clinton and top model Kate Moss. He works from photographs, gridding each canvas into a series of “pixels,” and applies three or more layers of paint to each diamond, getting more precise with each pass.
"Usually when I’m doing a nude, they immediately put a robe on the second I’ve taken a picture, but she sat there for hours naked and talking, so very comfortable. It was quite amazing."
Chuck Close’s Kate print depicts the model, designer, musician, and fashion icon Kate Moss. The artist shot her for W Magazine in 2003 using daguerreotype, the 19th-century photography process that he’s helped revive. The results are incredibly vivid. The translation that is so fundamental to Close’s process – the filtration of a given subject, first through a photographic lens and then through the grid system – necessarily involves an alchemical transition from one state to another. This image is bold in its simplicity as intangible, as Kate seems like an apparition, dissolving and resolving when viewed from different distances.