Deafies: Portraits of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals

I was inspired by Colin Davidson’s Jerusalem series, where he painted portraits of 12 individuals who lived and worked in the city of Jerusalem, with different backgrounds, cultures and traditions. His Silent Testimony is another series of 18 people who are connected by their experiences of loss through the Irish Troubles. David J. Kassan was another inspiration, as he is currently working on a project called the Edut Project in which he and two others captures and tell the Holocaust survivors’ stories through paintings, written profiles and short films.

With these two influences in mind, I plan to paint portraits of 10 D(d)eaf individuals as they tell us about themselves through ASL. My process is to videotape them as they tell us a little bit about themselves, and their experiences interacting/communicating with the hearing society. The videos will serve both as a reference source for the paintings, and to create a short film to accompany the paintings during exhibitions.

Also as part of this series, I plan to paint ASL signs as it pertains to Deafness.