Entries in portrait painting (2)


Girl selling Peanuts. Abuja, Nigeria

This little girl, probably 7 or 8 years old, would sell small bags of peanuts for 5 cents at the Kwalika bush bar. She would say, "Hello Master would you like peanuts?" and kneel. She wouldn't talk to me but if I asked her an important question she would go get the bar-hand to speak to me. For instance, when I asked her if she went to school, she would look around to see who was watching, then go and get the barman and he told me she goes to a Muslim school. I asked her why she can't tell me that and she would just shake her head. The kneeling and Master thing always bothered me. It was a custom leftover from British colonialism. I would sometimes buy the whole tray and hand out the bags to other people in the bush bar. "How much for the whole thing?" "Two dollars and 55 cents," she'd say. "Give me the whole tray." Sometimes I would give her a dollar for one bag. She would look around out of the corner of her eyes, look back, make sure it's legit, and run off with the dollar. I know she would look for me as she always came in when I was there. Her other friends, peanut salesgirls also, would wait outside and watch. Sometimes I would buy her and her friends a piece of chicken or some suya.  She had hands like an old woman, dry and worn. She always wore the same clothes, this outfit showed here. It took a long time for her to build enough trust to allow me to take her photograph. The desperation of people was often heart-wrentching, but still there were humane moments that were heart-warming.

Watercolor (Saved in Watercolors)

18" x 12"


The Next Rembrandt

I wonder if Rembrandt van Rijn ever wondered if people would admire his work in the future? I'd like to believe that he would have enjoyed this project.
"On [11 Apr 2016] in Amsterdam, an artwork called “the Next Rembrandt” will be unveiled for the first time.
It is the result of an 18-month project which asks whether new technology and data can bring back to life one of the greatest, most innovative painters of all time.
Advertising executive Korsten, whose brainchild the project was, admitted that there were many doubters. “The idea was greeted with a lot of disbelief and skepticism,” he said. “Also coming up with the idea is one thing, bringing it to life is another.”
The project has involved data scientists, developers, engineers and art historians from organizations including Microsoft, Delft University of Technology, the Mauritshuis in The Hague and the Rembrandt House Museum in Amsterdam.
The final 3D printed painting consists of more than 148 million pixels and is based on 168,263 Rembrandt painting fragments." - The Guardian
“Data is used by many people today to help them be more efficient and knowledgeable about their daily work, and about the decisions they need to make. But in this project it’s also used to make life itself more beautiful. It really touches the human soul.”– Ron Augustus, Microsoft
“We looked at a number of Rembrandt paintings, and we scanned their surface texture, their elemental composition, and what kinds of pigments were used. That’s the kind of information you need if you want to generate a painting by Rembrandt virtually.”- Joris Dik, Technical University Delft