The triumph of the Dude (in progress)
Oil on Canvas
68” x 43”
This painting is based of a 16th century painting by the Spanish court painter Velázquez. The original, which has taken the famous name “the Drunkards,” is an interesting take on a mythological subject matter of Bacchus. Bacchus was the Greek god of wine and merrymaking.
Here, my painting professor agreed to pose as the Dude, inspired by the Coen brother’s film The Big Lebowski. I posed myself in the image to receive blessings from my professor( or the dude) from my art. As I am the artist, I am presented with the traditional painter’s palette in my hands, alongside the symbols and artifacts that represent the Lebowski, a bowling ball, a milk carton, the rug. These items also coincide with similar items from the Bacchus painting, creating compositional elements that play from the original. Hence, the rug really brought the room together --> the rug really brings the composition together.
This painting presents us with this sort of “back-yard” religion that is hilarious in a glorifying way. The way the paint is handled on the Dude’s robe is in a similar fashion as how Velazquez treated the flesh of Bacchus. The characters create a striking comparison. For the Dude that we worship today, is the anti-hero. Just maybe as a God of Wine could be considered. Did you know there’s a contemporary religion based off the dude? It’s called Dudeism.