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This is portraiture at one remove: a painting of an imagined carved likeness. In it Pierre Roy turns his friend and fellow-artist, the mosaicist Boris Anrep, to stone. Through a characteristic manipulation of perspective, Roy manages to convey a sense of monumentality to the bust, which appears to tower over the studio behind. Though the painted sculpture is solemn and restrained, Roy’s perspective creates an odd effect like a cinematic zoom in which an object is suddenly brought into dramatic focus.

April 2009