- Marlene Dumas born 1953
- Oil paint on canvas
- Support: 502 x 404 mm
- Presented by an anonymous donor 2018
Dumas is interested in constructions of identity and the fluid distinctions between public and private roles. Lord Alfred Douglas, also known as ‘Bosie’, and dramatist Oscar Wilde were lovers at a time when sex between men was illegal. This lead to Wilde’s imprisonment for two years in 1895 for gross indecency. Dumas says: ‘I have tried to show Wilde less as a proud author and more as a vulnerable man in relation to the young lover who led to his tragic end.’ These portraits, based on 19th-century photographs, are hung together as a pair, as they could never have been at the time.
Gallery label, September 2018
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