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Return to previous pagePast Exhibition:

Reflections/ Refractions: Self-Portraiture in the Twentieth Century
April 10, 2009 through August 16, 2009
Second Floor

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This exhibition of approximately 75 works will probe the complex issues of understanding identity in the past century. Included in the exhibition are self portraits by Edward Hopper, Charles Sheeler, Louise Nevelson, Alexander Calder, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, David Hockney, Chuck Close, Larry Rivers, Jacob Lawrence and Faith Ringgold. While the works by these artists reveal traditional themes, including impersonation, reinvention, self-consciousness, vanity and the complex game of seeing a mirrored image, the exhibition will also explore how issues of identity and self-portrayal were bent in new directions in the 20th century as if refracted through a prism.

An illustrated catalogue will accompany the exhibition. Wendy Wick Reaves, curator of prints and drawings, is the exhibition curator.


Elaine de Kooning Self-Portrait / 1968 / Charcoal on paper / National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

Jasper Johns Self-Portrait / 1970 / Color lithograph on paper / National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution / Art Jasper Johns/Licensed by VAGA, New York

Chuck Close Self-Portrait / 1982 / Handmade toned paper pulp cast on grid / National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution


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