Unfit Frame, 2016

oil on canvas with antique frame, broom and books • 45 x 29 x 12 inches
About the Work

Buttressed by a weathered broom handle balanced on a selection of conspicuously titled books, the portrait has been wedged within the confines of its gilded edges. The broom handle freezes the scene in a gesture of activity, as an oversize figure struggles to fit into his undersized frame. Unfit Frame appropriates a portrait of Elihu Yale from the private collection of the Yale University Art Gallery, painted in the 18th century by an unknown artist. In this large sculptural painting the surface of the canvas undulates with wave like movement to direct the viewer towards the new focus of the composition. The face and appendages of the white male figures are distorted which offset the smooth, gilded framed face of a young black boy.