Balthazar (2019), oil on canvas, 152 cm x 122 cm.
This portrait, Balthazar stems from the historical theory of the three wisemen also known as the three Magis who visited Jesus upon his birth in the land of Bethlehem. These men came from three different parts of the world guided by the star of David, Balthazar was magi originating from the Arabias, initially there was a lack of proper identity of the latter, but according to medieval and renaissance art, he was identified as being a black man. The painting is one of three others that bear the leftover names of the other magis. According to art history each magi identifies to one particular colour; green, red and purple or sometimes blue. The colours would vary from one storyteller to the other. The three magis in this case are my closest friends who also became very close within themselves as a result of my friendship with them individually. The project is an attempt to create a dialogue with art and biblical history, I put myself in the position of Jesus as the link between all three of my friends (the magis). As for the colours of representation, I used the pouring of the three primary colours on the face of the subject to signify the interrelation between one magi to the other and the creation of many other colours from these three latter.
About the Artist
Born in 1995 in Benin city, Nigeria, immigrated to Montreal, Canada in 2007, as a Montreal based artist, from a land of arts and crafts, Daniel became intrigued with the art of drawing at an earlier stage until he delved into oil painting in late 2017 and automatically fell in love with this medium and has since then various aspects of representation.
Daniel Itiose is a hyper-realist whose work consists of the exploration of the human condition and how it shapes and molds our appearances as individuals with a main focus on portraiture. The gaze from the subjects tells a story in silence. The distribution of marks and brushstrokes on a flat surface to create a three-dimensional subject with the help of photography while subtracting the fictitiousness that often comes with it. Rather than beautifying the subject, he illustrates them as they really are; hair, skin and pores. This latter is depicted in a very detailed fashion, due to the meticulousness involved in the process.
The paradox within the goal of hyper-realism is to outstrip technology but with the aid of it itself, especially cameras. Hyper-realism is an illustration of how proper reproduction of a photograph can be done on canvas. “It’s a collection of thoughts and emotions frozen in time”.
See more of Daniel Itiose's work at: www.danielitioseart.com