See Chuck Close Up Close

PAFA hosts the artist’s first major photography exhibition.

Bill T. Jones (2008), black-and-white Polaroid diptych mounted on aluminum. (Chuck Close)

Photography has always at the heart of Chuck Close’s artwork, the painter famously recreating portraits on a massive scale. It was often portrayed as an arduous, painstaking process, with Close filling in little dots and triangles long after everybody else had gone home.

As a straight-up photographer, Close is less well-known. But the camera has always been there, we were merely blinded by those 10-foot-tall faces. Chuck Close Photographs is, according to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, “the first comprehensive survey” of Close’s work.

Running October 6-April 8, the exhibition includes works from 1964 to the present: maquettes (preliminary sketches), composite Polaroids, daguerreotypes and more.

Nancy (1968), gelatin silver print. (Chuck Close)


Proof print for Joel (1991), black and white Polaroid and ink.