Portrait of an Antelope, Exhibiting an Uncanny Resemblance to Abe

Jenny Kanzler

Baltimore, Maryland

Oil on canvas, 2005

19 x 12 in. (48.3 x 30.5 cm)

Collection of the artist

Artist Statement:
There is an undeniable resemblance in their bovine features, including a prominent brow bone, large wide-set eyes and protruding front teeth. But beyond the superficial likeness is something more –surprising—an expressive similarity in posturing, suggesting an essential sameness. I’ve been staring at Abe’s face for nine years now, and know it better than my own. When I came across the antelope exhibit at the Academy of Natural Sciences, there was an immediate familiarity, and then sadness. This kindled a fascination with the relationship of empathy, recognition and love. Portrait of an Antelope … resulted from using drawings of both Abe and the antelope as source material, with the intention of representing the physical and psychological characteristics that they seem to share.

privacy | copyright | smithsonian institution | image credits | media room