How Anh Duong & Other East End Artists are Redefining the Selfie

By Erin Riley | June 27, 2019 | Culture

Playing on the social media sensation, Anh Duong is one of the many East End artists who will exhibit at Guild Hall’s “Selfies and Portraits of the East End.”

Lazy Point by Anh Duong, 2011.

In the summer of 1998, Anh Duong, a striking young model from Paris moved into Andy Warhol’s former Montauk estate with her boyfriend at the time, artist Julian Schnabel. Until then, Duong was known more as muse than artist though she’d been painting her whole life, having learned from her mother while growing up in Bordeaux, France. But it wasn’t until she moved to Montauk that she painted her first self-portrait—the form that would be the focus of the rest of her artistic career.

The East End has been the setting for many firsts for Duong. Her first landscape painting, titled Lazy Point after her favorite road in East Hampton, will be on display at Guild Hall’s exhibit “Selfies and Portraits of the East End,” from June 20 to July 26, alongside self-portraits by other East End legends like Jack Ceglic, Cindy Sherman, Chuck Close, and her aforementioned ex, Julian Schnabel.

“When I first moved to the Hamptons, I didn’t really understand the beauty of it,” says Duong, who spent childhood summers in Spain, Italy, and the South of France with her Spanish mother and Vietnamese father. “But over the years, I’ve grown to love it completely. People always talk about the light, and it’s true.”

After her move to New York, Duong became a popular presence on the art and fashion scenes. In 2006 she married architect Barton Hubbard Quillen and moved into an old fisherman’s house in East Hampton. Although the couple went their separate ways, Duong kept the home and converted the barn into a painting studio.

Similar to her other self-portraits, Duong employed a nonreversing mirror to create Lazy Point, which involved bringing her bike into her studio to accurately paint her figure. “I’m not interested in representing myself in these portraits, but instead using myself as an object to portray something that the viewer can relate to,” says the artist, who doesn’t believe in waiting for inspiration to strike, but rather, provoking it. “What I find most interesting in the creative process is not knowing where I’m going and trusting that I will eventually arrive somewhere.” “Selfies and Portraits of the East End” runs from June 20 to July 26 at Guild Hall. 158 Main St., East Hampton, 324-0806



Photography by: photography courtesy of artist