Creation Date



image preview


acrylic, wood, and plaster on wood panel


Dimensions: 2 panels; 8' x 3' each

Artist Statement

The past year and a half of working and trying to find meaning in my work has lead me down a self reflective path, discovering meaning in my upbringing, relationships, and memories. It’s as if in trying to understand the world around me as a young adult, I’ve forgotten to discover myself. Initially, my self portraits felt therapeutic, as I released bad memories and coped with failed relationships. Unable to talk about my failures and fears, sharing myself through portraits was the easiest way for me to communicate with others. Re-examining my upbringing has made it painfully clear I am unable to be open nor transparent with others. Emotional, even physical boundaries are prevalent in my communications and relationships.

In my work, I take the boundaries I place between others and myself, and fantasize them. The body can be used as the first line of protection, limbs covering vulnerabilities or placed between the viewer and myself. Emotional boundaries are what I fantasize the most, using paint and materials to bring them to life. The act of covering a portrait I have just labored over is a mix of ease and irritation. Ease because this portrait has my own hand in it. It’s supposed to be me, but I’ve obviously changed something about myself I don’t like, over romanticized myself. Irritation because I’ve spent so much time in the process of building myself, to cover it up and make the portrait inaccessible to others seems opposing to what I want. It feels so much easier to deflect others with walls and accept entrapment, than to face the difficulty of relationships. Even color can be used to deprive the viewer of the real image of me. I imagine frustration or the viewer creating their own walls in response to my own. However, my real hope is that in painting so many walls over myself, I will begin to take them down and to be able to communicate to the audience my own feelings of entrapment.


© Kelsey J. Boyce, 2015. Photo credit: Carrie Quinney


self portrait, self-portrait, acrylic, mixed media, life size