13 Artists’ Portraits of Sylvia Plath (Including Her Own)
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Sylvia Plath’s meteoric posthumous rise as a pre-eminent American poet has eclipsed the fact that she was a talented artist as well. When she initially enrolled at Smith College, her first choice of major was studio art. After discovering her talent for writing, her professors encouraged her to major in English instead.
It took a long time for her visual art to come to light. The Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery mounted a retrospective of her work in 2017, fifty-four years after her death. A few of the works were self-portraits, including the one at right, and the first one, below. She also enjoyed making collages that were playful and satiric.
Self-Portrait in Semi-Abstract Style by Sylvia Plath, ink and gouache on paper c. 1946 – 1952
Estate of Robert Hittel © Estate of Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath’s brief, complicated, and brilliant life has earned her a prominent place in American letters. Numerous artists have paid tribute to her by interpreting her likeness in visual form. Here are just a few artists’ portraits of Sylvia Plath from around the web.
Sylvia Plath by IsMiseKate
Sylvia Plath by Nina Wadhouse
More about Sylvia Plath on this site
- The Tragic Relationship of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes
- Quotes from The Bell Jar
- Sylvia Plath’s Suicide Note: Death Knell, or a Cry for Help?
- 10 of Sylvia Plath’s Best-Loved Poems
- Fascinating Facts About Sylvia Plath
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