I am really enjoying my portraiture class and the issues that come up–namely those of likeness, representation, the gaze and subject versus object. As research into self-portraiture will prove invaluable to my senior seminar project (a study of form, figure, pattern and color, and self-definition), I’m reposting the conversation my portraiture class is having over Celeste Brusati’s “Stilled Lives: Self-Portraiture and Self-Reflection in 17th-Century Netherlands Still-Life Painting”

Donna Sadler

Hey everyone, I hope you enjoyed this relatively short article and another fun round of “Where’s Waldo”! I found Brusati’s essay to be quite engaging, alongside the little game of finding the artists inside the portraits. I have to say, it reminded me so much of optical illusions, in the sense that you are searching for figures in the painting that might not be so obvious to find. I don’t want to talk too much about the stuff yet, because I want to save some for our awesome discussion on Thursday. Obviously, I want this to be discussion based, so feel free to comment on my questions or even just vent out your thoughts while reading the article. I can’t wait to discuss the article in class on Thursday!

–       Jess


1.      I wanted to start off by addressing the traditional conventions of portraiture. Brusati states that “instead…

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