Reality Check - Contemporary American Trompe L'Oeil Exhibition Catalogue
Oil on linen, 24 inches in diameter
Wilson's trompe l'oeil paintings often involve intrusion into the viewer's space. In Convexed, a number of illusionistic devices are at work. There is the figure reaching out of the canvas, blurring the distinction between the fictive space of the picture and the real space of the viewer; there is the trompe l'oeil frame -- in the process of being created by the artist; and there is the illusion of the distortion by the convex 'mirror' that reveals the scene.
The artist's remarks:
"My painting Convexed is a self-portrait in which I allude to aspects of my past, present, and future as an artist. The past is represented by the interior of the Schuler School of Fine Arts in Baltimore, Maryland, where I began my formal art training and taught for a number of years. I knew those sculptures well, as they were undying slaves used in my study of form and figure. The heroic plaster of Adam and Eve's expulsion from the garden looms above my head. The pair is leaving Eden full of knowledge, but their journey promises to be a difficult one not unlike the transition from art student to professional artist. The present is shown by my 'in the moment' act of painting. The future is represented by the tip of the brush breaking what appears to be the hard and fast boundary of the frame's gilded edge and moving into the mystery of the unknown. All at once the past and the future exist in the moment -- the only place they can exist."