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Self Portrait with Grey Cat, 2003

Self Portrait with Grey Cat, 2003
Usage Conditions Apply
Artist
Fritz Scholder, 6 Oct 1937 - 10 Feb 2005
Sitter
Fritz Scholder, 6 Oct 1937 - 10 Feb 2005
Date
2003
Type
Painting
Medium
Acrylic on canvas
Dimensions
Stretcher: 203.2 × 172.7 cm (80 × 68")
Frame: 208.6 × 177.6 × 5.1 cm (82 1/8 × 69 15/16 × 2")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
Copyright
© 2003, Estate of Fritz Scholder
Object number
NPG.2018.2
Exhibition Label
A painter of Native American subject matter in the 1960s and 1970s, Fritz Scholder developed an approach that became known as Indian Pop. This is his last self-portrait, made in 2003 when he was battling complications brought on by diabetes. The dark, moody canvas features the artist boldly facing the viewer as he leans on his cane. His eyes are covered by tinted glasses, and the tubes from his oxygen tank are visibly running from his nose to the ambiguously shadowy floor, which has been described as a reference to the "shadow of death." An avid reader, Scholder chose to include two books in the foreground, and the gray cat likely refers to the Egyptian feline goddess Bastet. Critics, who often cite this painting as a particularly important self-portrait, also point to the influence of Francis Bacon, an artist Scholder deeply admired.
Durante los años sesenta y setenta, Fritz Scholder pintó temas de los pueblos nativos americanos en un estilo que se dio a conocer como "pop indio". Este es su último autorretrato. Lo realizó en 2003, ya afectado por problemas de diabetes. El lienzo oscuro y melancólico presenta al artista encarando audazmente al espectador, apoyado en su bastón. Unas gafas oscuras le ocultan los ojos, pero los tubos de su tanque de oxígeno se hacen patentes, yendo desde su nariz hasta un piso de sombras ambiguas que se ha dicho aluden a la "sombra de la muerte". Ávido lector, Scholder incluyó dos libros en primer plano, y el gato gris posiblemente remite a la diosa Bastet, identificada con los gatos en la mitología egipcia. Los críticos citan esta pintura como un autorretrato de importancia singular y señalan en él influencias de Francis Bacon, artista que Scholder admiraba mucho.
Provenance
The artist; the artist's estate. (LewAllen Galleries); sold to NPG 2018
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
Place
United States\Arizona\Maricopa\Scottsdale