Kamis, 23 Juli 2015

City Hospital [EOL in Art 73]

In 1953 Alice Neel created a series of ink and gouache drawings depicting the last weeks of her mother's life, which were spent in a New York city hospital. 



In this drawing, a black nurse comforts a prone elderly lady. The pale hues of the painting--blue, black, white--evoke a somber mood and imply sickness. This sense of despair is augmented by a harsh cityscape background beyond a dark river, which the viewer sees through a window.



Compassion counters these desolate surroundings, however, for a bond is apparent between the nurse and elderly patient. The nurse's hands rest on the patient in a partial cradling gesture, and the trajectory of the lines made by the nurse's arms and hands and the elderly patient's flowing hair establishes a visual and emotional link. The connection between the two figures is supplemented by the thin smiles on both women's faces.






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