Balinese Schoolgirls: Sumerti & Koming (after Chasseriau)
Acrylic & mixed media on panel,
36"h x 24"w, Item No. 16841,
Son of a French adventurer, and disciple of Ingres, Theodore Chasseriau is recognized as a painter who successfully reconciled the Classicism of Ingres and the Romanticism of Delacroix. He is also acknowledged as having had a significant impact on de Chavannes and Moreau, and through these artists’ influence, reverberations in Matisse and Gauguin.
As a fellow travelling renderer, and fellow admirer of Delacroix, I have paid homage to Chasseriau in my rendition of one of his signature works: The Two Sisters. His own sisters, Adele and Atine, have been replaced by my young “sisters” in spiritual practice: Sumerti and Koming, whom I met at an ashram in Bali. I’ve portrayed them wearing t-shirts referencing Joshua Tree bands: Masters of Reality and Mohave Lords. On a personal level, the piece expresses a feminine solidarity that I continue to experience all over the world. It seeks to unite disparate geographies, peoples, and practices that have inspired me of late. In a more universal sense, the piece speaks to our commonalities as human beings: the kinship and bonds between sisters and friends, the struggle to maintain traditions in our globalized world, and the sacred role of music in all cultures and traditions.