Are You Sure They Aren’t Photographs?

Karel Funk Untitled #3 2003

 Untitled #3 2003 by Karel Funk

Winnipeg artist, Karel Funk’s paintings are untitled. The kids I take on tours of his current exhibit at the Winnipeg Art Gallery like that because they get to make up their own names for his paintings.

Untitled #2 2003 by Karel Funk

Untitled #2 2003 by Karel Funk

The first thing the kids always ask me is if I’m sure the paintings aren’t photographs. The images look so real they are certain they must be photos taken with a camera.

Untitled 2002 by Karel Funk

Untitled 2002 by Karel Funk

Once I’ve convinced them the images are really paintings they want to know how long it took Karel Funk to make them. I tell them that one painting can sometimes take him months to create.

Untitled #65 2014 by Karel Funk

Untitled #65 2014 by Karel Funk

Kids will stand for a long time in front of some paintings, like this one, looking at all the tiny hairs painted individually to make up the furry hood. They are intrigued by the character’s nose ring.

Untitled #25 2006 by Karel Funk

Untitled #25 2006 by Karel Funk

They note the eyelashes on the people in the paintings and like the shadows on the faces.

Untitled #21 2006 by Karel Funk

Untitled #21 2006 by Karel Funk

Even though some paintings don’t show a person’s face at all the kids will tell me they know whether the person in the jacket is sad or happy or worried or scared. They say they know just by looking at them and reading their body language.

Untitled Blue Hood 2002 by Karel Funk

Untitled Blue Hood 2002 by Karel Funk

On Tuesday one boy remarked that the men and women in the exhibit looked like sad or lonely people you might see on the train or bus. He was delighted when I praised his intuition by telling him Karel Funk was inspired to do some of the work in the exhibit after observing the lack of intimacy and sense of isolation between passengers on the subways of New York when he lived there.

Untitled #56 2012 by Karel Funk

Untitled #56 2012 by Karel Funk

The children I take on tours of Karel Funk’s work at the Winnipeg Art Gallery are fascinated by it. I’m sure you will be too.

Other posts about current exhibits at the Winnipeg Art Gallery……..

Getting To Know Oviloo

A Legendary Love Story Illustrated by a Legend

Children Are Going to Love Her

1 Comment

Filed under Art, WInnipeg Art Gallery

One response to “Are You Sure They Aren’t Photographs?

  1. Pingback: They Look Like Photographs | What Next?

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