Saturday, August 12, 2006

The Girl With the Pearl Earring, 2005

About a year ago I was sitting at a table at Elmo, the somewhat-stylish restaurant on 7th Avenue between 19th and 20th Street, in somewhat-stylish Chelsea, staring at the hostess, trying to figure out what it was about her that I found so compelling. I disregarded the fact that she's a knock-out--there was something else.

Then it hit me--she looked just like the girl in Vermeer's "Girl With the Pearl Earring." Or at least she looked as much like that whiter-than-white Dutch girl from the 17th Century as a modern woman of color could.

This, of course, is Vermeer's version (cropped a little, I think):



This is the girl from Elmo (also cropped a little):



And this is the portrait I painted of her:



It's called "Elena C. (Girl With the Pearl Earring, 2005)"

I happened to have a round 42" canvas sitting around the studio. I could never quite decide what I wanted to do with it. But it seemed perfect for this particular task.

But really, what's spooky is how much Elena looks like the Vermeer girl.

Dee dee dee dee (this would be the theme from the Twilight Zone playing).

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