Critical Analysis This is an oil on canvas painting by Friday Kohl called Cropped Hair, made in 1940 at a size of coxcomb. It is a self- portrait of her with a scissor in one hand and her hair creeping everywhere on the floor. As you can see in the painting, the fore ground busy because of the long dark hair that is laid all over the floor. In the middle ground of the portrait, it shows Friday Kohl sitting in a chair, wearing an oversized suit, that by the looks of it isn’t hers while holding a serious, upset or pain face.
As if she was thinking of the pain that someone had caused her, expressing it thought her minting. The way she is position in the painting is out of proportion, from her neck and below it is different from her neck and upwards, making her looks stiff and uncomfortable. The chair also stands out more than the rest of the portrait along with the hands, face and neck; she had used a bright warm yellow to out-stand the other dark and light, warm and cool colors. The toning of the middle ground is also very clear, showing all the shadows that are in the suits and her face.
The background of the portrait is different from the rest. She had painted it plain, as well s making it look like they are clouds, bring all the attention to the foreground. The top of the background shows some text and music notes. The used of Friday Kohl’s Line, Tone, Color, Shape, Pattern and shapes are very unique. She had used manly warm color in her portrait. A cool blue for the suit, a warm red for the floor, a warm yellow for the chair and a mixture of colors for the wall but mostly yellow.
The tone’s she used made the chair and herself look AD and the rest AD. The pattern she had used is clearly shown in the wall behind her; it is soft and has a repetition of smudge pots making it looks like clouds. This is very different from the rest of the portrait. The texture of the background, her skin, chair and suit are smooth rather than rough. The way she painted the portrait floor, from light transitioning into dark to make it seems spacey and how she placed the horizontal line far back.
This make also made the room more spacious and wide as if she is in an empty room and by herself. The focal point of the portrait is of Friday Kohl sitting on the chair and the hair surrounding her. Your eyes would be more attacked to the hair that is on the floor cause it gives Off creepy but also sad look to it, your eyes then moves to her in the oversized suit then to the plain background. This it because of her use of red in the portrait, your eyes are usually more attacked to warm colors.
Friday Kohl painted this portrait after she had a divorce with her husband, for cheating on her with her own blood sister. She wanted to express the self- independence and self- confidence that she had gain after the divorce. Showing him and other’s that she does not need him anymore. I believe that the oversized suit she is wearing in the portrait is Diego. She did this because her husband liked her to wear dresses and now that he is gone, she does not need to dress to impress. The scissor that she is holding in her hand, tells me that she had cut off all her hair.
This was like a sacrifice to her. Her hair was the one thing her husband loved most about her, by cutting all her hair off. She is trying to show that she had cut all ties that she had ever had with her husband. If Diego had left her, then why goes she need the one thing her loved most about her. Your hair is like your Identity. No hair, no identity ‘look it was because of your hair, owe you are without hair, I don’t love you anymore’ this is what the text in the portrait says. This was a big sacrifice she was willing to make.
The portrait looks very empty with Just her in the middle could maybe explain the feeling she was feeling after the divorce, depress, sad, lonely and empty. In my own opinion I dislike this portrait. It looks creepy and gross, with all the hair loosely laid on the ground and her proportion isn’t correct. This is something I would not want to hang up on a wall. It gives off an unpleasant and uncomfortable feeling, like she is looking at you every second, staring at you with hateful eyes.