"The Outwin 2016" Finalist: Thu Nguyen
Out of over 2,500 entries in the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, 43 artists have their work shown in the exhibition “The Outwin 2016: American Portraiture Today.” Read more about one of the finalists, Thu Nguyen.
What about the sitter inspired you?
I always like painting my children since familiarity reduces the separation between sitter and painter.
How did the sitter inspire this specific portrait?
I am fascinated in how my young daughter is a blend of emerging maturity combined with lingering desire to still be a playful, care free child.
What made you decide to depict this sitter as you did?
I wanted to create a contrast between the sweetness of the valentine dress and the formal stiffness of her pose which leads to a subtle tension.
How did your work develop from idea to execution?
The sitters pose reminded me, for some reason, of medieval religious iconography. To heighten this iconography feel, I heightened the spot light effect on the figure as well as carefully rendering the tight details of her dress.
What relationship do the materials have to the meaning?
I used oil on panel to get a carefully rendered image like the European Renaissance icon paintings.
How does the piece fit within your larger body of work?
I have done many paintings of my two children, in all of them I also try not just capture a moment in time but to also express a little of their unique character.
You can see Nguyen’s work in “The Outwin 2016: American Portraiture Today,” up now through Jan. 8, 2017. Also, be sure to vote in our People’s Choice Competition.