THE BEAUTY OF OLD, an oxymoron in today’s world, began as my attempt to widen the lens through which women’s aging was viewed. As I observe, appreciate and acknowledge the authentic beauty of real old women and men, I find mentors for my own aging. I enjoy co-creating with my subjects by inviting them to choose colors, symbols, and even write words or poems onto their portraits. When I draw, I touch people with my eyes and they, in turn, touch me with their spirit. In a society mortified by aging, I’m interested in exploring and making visible the rich textures, character and diversity of each face.
The Beauty of Old: Finding Mentors breaks the chain that links youth and sexual ripeness to beauty. While each portrait stands alone as a unique character study, when mounted as an installation, the viewer feels surrounded and supported by a community of elders.