Portfolio > Kouros and Koroi: Oils / Poems

Same adolescent boy, one shy, the other bold
My Two Selves
oil on canvas
62 x 34"

"My Two Selves" was influenced by Kouros, the ancient Greek male youth statue, which was always nude. According to Garrison, the ancient Greeks believed that “the perfect nude argues (for) a life lived in accordance with nature…order, balance and beauty… as well as… the ready acceptance of sexual nature. The nude as an aesthetic form (it) is unadorned human truth.” (1) p 176.
My kouroi specifically addresses American youth identity issues, the ambivalent identity of male youths caught between their most elemental needs for security, love and tenderness and their fear of being labeled effeminate, too sensitive, sissy. Because American youths are not encouraged to live in accordance with nature's balance and beauty my kouroi are clothed. Their sexual nature is conflicted. I represented the conflict with two figures one with his pectoral muscles strong and sure, the palette knife sweeping across his chest. The other molded with a more tentative blade, his glance reticent and his colors softer and more muted.