Patrick McGrath Muñiz, Introspection, 2019

The painting is an allegorical self-portrait. The artist writes “…as the title implies it is a reflection on how recent events like the aftermath of hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico have impacted me (the background of this painting is a view from my childhood home and studio that were destroyed by the hurricane and then looted and vandalized afterward. It is also a reinterpretation of the memento mori genre in which Saint Francis was often depicted in Spanish Colonial art holding a human skull, Bible, and hourglass, reflecting on the brevity of life. There is also a half-eaten peach on the table, symbolizing the ephemeral pleasures in life. There is much allegory and a quote from the book of Matthew ‘casting the pearls before the swine,’ and on the book held by the monk an allusion to Goya’s The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters.’”
The Latin inscription translates to ‘Ignorance is the enemy of art.’ The painting is a commentary on how we tell ourselves fictions that distract us from the existential threat we are facing.

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