Brian Mouhlas
Shadow Boxer
2015
Oil on canvas
63 x 29.5 in.
I was drawn to aspects of the referential image for this painting due to the strong complementary color scheme and because it struck me as a powerful homage to an “underdog". The original referential image had another boxer in the left hand side of the image, but I made an intentional decision to crop the figure out completely, so that all that remained in opposition to the smaller figure was a shadow of something much larger than him/herself. The figure to the right, with the stoic body language is at once ready for whatever faces him/her and can appear to have his/her chest pushed out as a sign of readiness. On the other side of the spectrum, the figure can appear to be particularly vulnerable due in part to the lowered arms, which are primarily used to protect one in boxing. Perhaps this painting is a metaphor that examines an internal struggle that not only faces the figure but also attempts to box (no pun intended) the figure in, represented through the dripping paint that has a restraining like feel.
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