line drawing of a standing youth with hands behind his back, wearing a wide-brimmed hat, blouse with wide ruffled collar and 3/4 sleeves, wide legged gaucho pants, and shoes with bows on top; text written at top of sheet: "R showed me how to make a / paper hat Looked like Watteau"; handmade cream paper with some rough and some smoother areas and some mottled pale tan areas

%C2%A9 Nicolas Africano

Garbo Drawing: R Showed Me How to Make a Paper Hat, 2018

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Nicolas Africano creates mysterious drawings, paintings, and cast glass sculptures of female figures, modeled after his wife, Rebecca. This drawing is part of a recent body of work comprising large-scale graphite drawings and cast glass sculptures that portray the American actress Greta Garbo (1905–1990). In this series, Garbo takes the role of Pierrot the Clown, a comically tragic character—the original “sad clown”—who has inspired artists for centuries. Using Rebecca (“R”) as his model, Africano based the pose and costume of his figure on photographs taken in 1939 by society photographer Cecil Beaton of Garbo dressed as Pierrot. In a journal entry, Africano referenced a desire to make art with emotionally evocative content: “I am poised, still, at a threshold,” at “that moment between innocence and experience.”

Details
Title
Garbo Drawing: R Showed Me How to Make a Paper Hat
Artist Life
born 1948
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2018.79.2
Provenance
The artist, Normal, Ill.; (Weinstein Hammons Gallery, Minneapolis); sold to MIA, 2018.
Curator Approved

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line drawing of a standing youth with hands behind his back, wearing a wide-brimmed hat, blouse with wide ruffled collar and 3/4 sleeves, wide legged gaucho pants, and shoes with bows on top; text written at top of sheet: "R showed me how to make a / paper hat Looked like Watteau"; handmade cream paper with some rough and some smoother areas and some mottled pale tan areas

© Nicolas Africano

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