Westport Arts Center does ‘About Face’ for Chuck Close show

Chuck Close — and his work — have been a constant presence in Fairfield County as of late: the artist recently collaborated with students on an exhibition at the Housatonic Museum of Art in Bridgeport and the Bruce Museum is currently showcasing a collection of his paintings in Greenwich.

Westport will be the next stop on Close’s Connecticut tour, as the Westport Arts Center launches an exhibition of the artist’s work this week.

Opening with a public reception on Friday, Nov. 22 at 6 p.m., “Chuck Close: About Face” will include photo maquettes, prints and drawings, along with a short video interview, “Notes to Self: Chuck Close” by CBS News producer and Westport native Paige Kendig.

“Chuck Close’s portraits are poised between abstraction and representation,” Helen Klisser, director of visual arts, said. “In the exhibition, questions arise, such as ‘How were these portraits executed and who are these people depicted? Why do they transfix us?’ Viewing the photo maquettes brings insight to the intellectual, emotional and physical processes of one the world’s great contemporary artists.”

“Chuck Close: About Face” includes images of close friends and artists, including artists Cecily Brown, Keith Hollingworth, Andrés Serrano, James Siena and Kara Walker as well as composer Philip Glass, collector Agnes Gund, and art dealer Klaus Kertess. Exhibited works are culled from the New York collections of Beth DeWoody and Joel and Sherry Mallin, as well as Westport’s Robert Elson, who was Close’s friend and subject in 1980s.

The WAC is at 51 Riverside Ave. For more information, call 203-222-7070 or go online.

Scott Gargan