JAUME PLENSA | Self Portrait as H.B. IV



Self Portrait as H.B. IV, 2006
Cast black marble
37 x 21 1/4 x 41 in.


The Artist
Ron and Ann Pizzuti, Columbus, Ohio (acquired from Gray Gallery, Chicago/New York, June 2006)

The present work is "related to an extensive series of self-portraits – some with trees, some without – that pay homage to musicians and writers important to Plensa...these self-portraits recognize the impact all of these figures have had on the artist and acknowledge the multiple nature of the self. Their names are emblazoned in raised letters on his skin."1

The text on the surface of the present work lists names of notable composers, such as Claude Debussy, Marc-Antoine Charpentier and Ludwig van Beethoven. The title's "H.B." refers to another of the names listed on the sculpture's surface, that of the French Romantic composer Hector Berlioz. Berlioz composed one of Plensa's favorite operas – the 1845 The Damnation of Faust. Throughout his career, Plensa has designed sets and costumes for several opera and theater productions, including those for a 1999 staging of Berlioz's The Damnation of Faust at the Salzburger Festspiele in Salzburg, Austria and the Ruhrtriennale in Bochum, Germany.

1Jed Morse in Jaume Plensa: Genus and Species (Dallas: Nasher Sculpture Center, 2010), p. 37.

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