Jack Balas, Checkered Passed (Tied) (#1574)
Checkered Passed (Tied) (#1574)


Signed in red, l.l.

Oil and enamel on canvas

44 x 76 inches


The artist writes:

“‘Checkered Passed (Tied) (#1574)’ is a painting that touches on race and all of the discussions and controversy in the United States these days. The black model has a white arm and the white model has a black arm. Visually thus, they are tied to one another (my original title for the painting was ‘Tied’). Further, note the lines literally tying the two models together. However, there is certainly a lot of wordplay going on. Being in a race is one thing, and tying instead of winning is another. The checkered flag signifies the winner in a race. Here the winning flag has been passed to the black model, which is literally pictured in the image. And, the whole history of race in this country is a sordid (i.e. checkered) past. In my mind the words and the image keep going around in circles—in a great way, and in an optimistic way as well. (It’s about time.)”

Work by Jack Balas