Wake

Media - 1992.37.11 - SAAM-1992.37.11_3 - 127169
Copied Malcah Zeldis, Wake, 1974, oil on panel, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of David L. Davies, 1992.37.11

Artwork Details

Title
Wake
Date
1974
Location
Not on view
Dimensions
23 1231 78 in. (59.781.0 cm.)
Credit Line
Gift of David L. Davies
Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on panel
Classifications
Keywords
  • Ceremony — funeral
  • State of being — death
  • Figure group
  • Architecture Interior — domestic — living room
Object Number
1992.37.11

Artwork Description

Malcah Zeldis enjoyed painting as a young adult but only began painting seriously when she was middle-aged. Her paintings often fuse her childhood memories and recent events. This combination leads to dream-like imagery than can be hard to situate in a certain time frame. Zeldis believes that painting helps her sort out feelings about life. In Wake she explores death with bright colors and specific details. As a child, Zeldis went to a museum and was fascinated by the detailed work of Flemish painters. That fascination stayed with her, and her work reflects a careful study of details, such as the profusion of flowers in this painting, the room's reflection in the mirror, and the subtle details of each person’s clothing.