Mother and Daughter
Date 1984
Medium Oil on canvas
Dimensions 213.5 x 519 x 4.5 cm
Inventory ID UID 102-197
Eric Fischl grew up in the Long Island suburbs. He studied in Phoenix, Arizona and then in California. He then moved to Chicago, where, after various jobs in the food industry, he began exhibiting his ‘psycho-sexual suburban dramas’, marked by Ed Paschke’s influence. Fischl has always been interested in both feminine and masculine figures, drawn from daily suburban life: ‘I always wanted to tell tales that take place on a mythic scale, but I cannot find it within myself. I have to couch them in quotidian terms, put them into the banal context of daily life.’ In essence, he wishes to tell a story, placing the family at the centre of his work, ‘in a sort of archetypal language. I referred to the mother, the father, the daughter, the son, the husband, the wife and so on. I could then go off in my imagining and ask, “What are the mother and the son doing now?” and make up those things.’ His work went through several different phases. The piece in the Berardo collection belongs to one of the most productive of these: the ‘family paintings’ sequence, intelligent intrusions into daily life, using the register of ‘voyeurism’ ironically. J-FC