Chuck Close: An Interview

1980 | 00:46:38 | United States | English | B&W | Mono | 4:3 | Video

Collection: On Art and Artists, Interviews, Single Titles

Tags: Blumenthal/Horsfield Interviews, Interview, Painting, Visual Art

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Chuck Close (b.1940) has been a leading figure in contemporary art since the early 1970s. As a young artist in the mid-’60s, Close turned away from the model of Abstract Expressionism to develop a simple but labor-intensive working method based upon repetition and small color elements. Denying himself expressive gesture, Close builds shapes and tonal variations within a working grid that provides the structure for large-scale, close-up portraits. Close’s formal analysis and methodological reconfiguration of the human face have radically changed the definition of modern portraiture.

This 1980 interview with Kate Horsfield was conducted before Close’s debilitating illness, which confines him to a wheelchair but has not prevented him from working on his paintings. "I wanted to get away from virtuoso art marksmanship," Close says in this interview.  "I wanted to build a big beautiful image out of stupid, little, insignificant, in and of themselves uninteresting marks."

A historical interview originally recorded in 1980 and re-edited in 2004 with support from the Lyn Blumenthal Memorial Fund.