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Don Bachardy's Portraits of Women on Exhibit at Santa Monica College Gallery
By Lookout Staff
October 30, 2017 -- Artist Don Bachardy has produced thousands of portraits mostly painted during single sittings in the Santa Monica home he once shared with his life partner, the famous British writer Christopher Isherwood.
A broad selection of portraits of women Bachardy drew from life between 1962 and 2017 will be on display starting Tuesday at the Pete & Susan Barrett Art Gallery on the Santa Monica College Madison campus, 1310 11th Street.
Among his most notable works is the official portrait of California Governor Jerry Brown that hangs in the California State Capitol.
Bachardy, who was a student at Chouinard Art Institute, met Isherwood when he was 18 and began drawing and painting portraits of the author.
Isherwood, a prodigious diary writer whose “Berlin Stories” served as source material for the Oscar-winning movie “Cabaret,” introduced his young partner to artists, writers and filmmakers.
The two would remain together for 33 years, until Isherwood's death in 1986.
Bachardy -- whose works are in permanent collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Smithsonian Institution and the National Portrait Gallery in London -- described his approach to portrait painting in a 2015 Los Angeles Times interview.
“My favorite part of any portrait is always the mouth,” Bachardy said. “Of course, eyes are more telling than anything else, but the mouth is where the personality of a person most expresses itself.”
Eight books of Bachardy’s work have been published and his life and work has been documented in Terry Sanders' film "The Eyes of Don Bachardy."
Bachardy's account of the celebrities whose portraits he painted is the subject of his bestselling book "Stars in My Eyes" published in 2000.
For more information, call (310) 434-3434.
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