The Evolution of a Mouth #1
48 x 36 inches
Mixed Media with Acrylic Binder on Canvas
My collage paintings that include Head of a Young Girl by Johannes Vermeer focus particularly on the symbolic effect Vermeer achieved wit the anatomy of the girl’s mouth and eyes. The overhanging lip turns down to a point separated and in contrast to the fullness of the lower lip. The anatomically impossible form of the lips expose the tip of her tongue and teeth, evoking a heightened sense of spiritual eroticism and poignancy.
The young girl embodies innocence and wisdom, which Vermeer highlights through the careful treatment of her mouth and eyes. These delicate features symbolize a heightened outcome of an evolution from our biological and cultural development. Her expression is communicated through her features, which are harmonized in visual cues and context: the assertive eyes, the slightly open mouth and the withdrawing gesture of the head. I refer to the mouth and eyes as a prominent features in my own painted ground in order to celebrate this work of art and the quality of human experience that it captures.