All Art is a Self-Portrait

I think all art is a self-portrait. Regardless of whether it is intended to be a self-portrait.

I sometimes feel selfish when I make art purposely about myself. It feels selfish, almost narcissistic, to paint who I am, a direct self-portrait. To make art for myself, about myself. To make art that is about my emotions, my struggles, my thoughts.

When I look at art in a museum or gallery, I like to think about what it would have been like to be the artist. What were they thinking about during the creation process? How did they feel? How did their state of mind affect their work? Did making the art elicit happiness? positivity? or negativity? anger? frustration? Did they like their art?

The artist made every little brushstroke, every subtle shift in the surface, every line, carving, mark. A collection of ideas, thoughts, emotions. Is it possible to separate the artist from their work?

Jeff Koons/artists who have assistants helping with the painting – can their art be considered a self-portrait? Is the artist the idea or the creation? Does it even matter?

untitled (cope no.2), oil on canvas, 24″ x 18″, 2021

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