Portraits and small figures

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Arcenia Martin Davis (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Andrew Martin

Abstract: The body of work presented here remains faithful to a certain kind of classicism. It represents a return to the model—to the purely visual experience. The art world, as a microcosm of the world at large, seems to revolve in cycles. The beginning of the 20th century marked an attempt by artists to establish new aesthetic goals and to create for themselves a new plastic world. It is my belief that the 21st century will bring with it a reacclimatisation of man to nature and experience. This change is simply part of the natural order of psychological and social evolution. I foresee a return to representation of the human body—the artist's principal medium ever since antiquity-accompanied by the awakening of a new sincerity in means of expression. My own approach has been first to come as close as possible to a realistic treatment of the model. Next, there are decisions to be made concerning certain exaggerations and eliminations for the overall unity and rhythmn of the whole. In the portrait busts, I want to present a calm and controlled exterior, with an "inner illumination" into the personality and emotions of the individual portrayed. I am striving for the ability displayed by the Romans to reveal character, although with less harshness and exactitude (perhaps with a slightly modified realism). With the figures, I am seeking a serenity from temperament, a kind of poetry of silence. The works should be imbued with an innate modesty and a half poetic, half instinctive calm of the soul. I have always admired the crystal-clear realism and grace of Greek sculpture, the avoidance of mystery and complication. I also want to convey the Greek qualities of dignity, firmness, and repose.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 1977

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