Francesco Clemente
Vestito/Vestitia 1978–9

Artwork details

Date 1978–9
Medium Ink and gouache on paper on canvas
Dimensions Image: 2034 x 3000 mm
Acquisition Presented by Janet Wolfson de Botton 1996
Not on display

Display caption

In 1978 Clemente began a series of large loosely rendered ink drawings of himself, usually nude, together with one other strangely juxtaposed element. He drew himself without the use of a photograph or mirror, and used paper the size of a wall in his apartment in Rome. In this drawing the kneeling artist, with his arm outstretched, stares out toward the viewer. The only other element is the red robe near the centre of the canvas. Although self portraiture is a traditional artistic subject, Clemente explores it in a fresh way. He uses his body as a generic image of nakedness and the robe as the equivalent image of clothing. The two symbols make a proposition about the idea of being clothed or unclothed.

September 2004

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