Barbara Roberts Portraiture Analysis

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In the halls of the State Capitol building, the portrait hangs near the House Of Representatives on the second level of the building. The piece is located in the center of the wall, with the portrait of Oswald West (Plate 1) to its left and Barbara Roberts (Plate 2) to its right. When comparing all three pictures it seems clear why Paul Missal's piece is in the middle. Out of the three, Straub's portrait is the only informal representation of a governor, especially since the painting is mostly a landscape. The portrait of Oswald West comprises a black and white palette with the traditional forty-five degree pose, only showing him from the waist up. Mr.West is also wearing a formal suit with an emotionless face. On the other hand, Barbara Roberts…show more content…
Brilliant comments on a portrait of Shakespeare (Plate 4) to interpret what it means to be masked. On page 120, Brilliant incorporates Shakespeare in an, “acceptable contemporary type is to mask him, to make him play the role that all others, similarly represented, to bury his physiognomic likeness beneath a supervening imagery that demanded the sentient viewer's primary attention." To be masked it to fix the morals that exist in the sitter's individuality, regardless of the conflicting possibility of recasting existence. On the other hand, to unmask an individual in a portrait would, "embrace the idea of a person that has dispersed into the individual gestures and moments of life"(p.129). Unmasked individuals represents the person as wholly themselves, playing their own part as a unique character. In the case of the Robert Straub’s portrait, his portrayal would fall under an unmasked image of Straub’s illustration. For instance, Straub is not located an office, but instead in a large nature scene standing by the Willamette River. Additionally, he is not wearing formal clothing, as the rest of the piece is also informal for a governmental portrait. For these reasons, Paul Missal depicted Straub as more than one of Oregon's governor's, but also the environmental enthusiast that he developed into when fighting for water and air pollution as
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