Portraits

Bailey’s portraits explore how humans present themselves and interpret each other. These paintings and mixed media pieces ask us to consider the assumptions we make after initial visual contact, and to question our readiness to conclude that those we see are happy, troubled, intellectual, musical, or politically on our side.By calling attention to his subjects’ body language and attire, Bailey reminds us that while some cultures demand a firm handshake and steady eye-contact, other cultures prohibit such behavior. In some places, the human face is shielded from view; in others, facial tattoos and body piercings reveal an individual’s status. Bailey juxtaposes traditional and contemporary symbols, and questions the practice of adorning the body with images whose historic and often sacred meanings the wearer may not know.