The Final Touch

By Jennifer Wu | September 5, 2020

My models for this painting are from a photo I took in the neighborhood, pre-COVID-19. They had been serene and self-assured, moving with certainty, in my unfinished painting from a while ago. When I recently revisited the work, it seemed that they — the figures — were asking for an update. A small one, really, but an update that these times in the real world seemed to demand. They needed masks.


“The Final Touch,” digital art (2020)


After I gave them their masks, the painting seemed to present larger questions as to what it implies, and it evoked feelings of disquiet and uncertainty. Are they too close to each other? Should there be more distancing? If there had been an exchange of greetings and hugs before they wore the masks, what would they have done in our current circumstances? An elbow bump? A smile? Or avoidance… Would their smiles shine through the masks, I asked myself, when I finished the painting.

COVID-19 has changed the painting, as it has changed us. This is such a trying time, but still we hope smiles will shine through.

Copyright © 2020 Jennifer Wu
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  1. Richard Gordon on September 5, 2020 at 2:49 pm

    A thought-provoking exploration of “before and after”!

    • Jennifer wu on September 6, 2020 at 5:40 pm

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts about “before and after the arrival of covid” and thank The Pandemic Lens for recording it as it happens.

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