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Sunday, December 15, 2013

Charles Parrish Is Looking at Your Head

Posted by on Sun, Dec 15, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Charles Parrish, with bust of Desmond Tutu.
  • Kelly O
  • Charles Parrish, with bust of Desmond Tutu.

You're a sculptor of heads. Your living room at home is full of heads you've made. Who are they?

Let's see. Down the line, there's Leonardo da Vinci, Desmond Tutu, Albert Einstein, Beethoven. Ah, here's Edwin T. Pratt. A Native American. Michael Jordan, Abraham Lincoln, Mother Queen, John Stanford, Van Carvinton, George Washington. Here's a portrait of myself. Um, Booker T. Washington, Martin Luther King Jr. Let's see now, one called Black Southerner, Forest Whitaker, one called Penetrating Eyes, Benjamin Banneker, Inigo Jones, John F. Kennedy, Ken Griffey Sr., John J. Oliver, one called Black Character. Mike Dillard, you know, of the department store in the South? This one is Architectural-Geometrical Portrait. That there is Old and Lonely. Michelangelo, Jimmy Carter, Karl Marx, and Malcolm X. And one more—who is that? I can't think. Oh. Lawrence Welk.

They're made of foam and painted to look like bronze or marble. Why?

I'd rather work with bronze or marble. Foam is just what I can afford.

When you walk down the street, do you just constantly look at people's heads?

Yeah, I do. I find myself doing that.

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