Black and White Goya


A few months ago was rewrapping some old paintings and took this photo.
The image is handpainted oil, based on a portrait of Goya by Vicente Lopez from an art history book. I made it a few years out of art school. Surfacewise it's pretty tight--it's holding up as an artwork. I didn't know Gerhard Richter at the time I did it but would have compared it to him (only warmer and more human for all the distancing of the grisaille photoreproduction).
Was laughing at the reaction to Damien Hirst's recent desire to paint like Rembrandt. Some of the fogey artbloggers were making fun of his nerve. Of course he's right--that kind of skill is still possible. The question is, is it necessary?