Artist Becomes Infinite Through His Mind-Bending Series of Painted Self Portraits

Creative Self Portrait by Seamus WrayCreative Self Portrait by Seamus Wray

This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase, My Modern Met may earn an affiliate commission. Please read our disclosure for more info.

The self-portrait has long been a fixture in painting. Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, and Frida Kahlo are just a few creatives known for their famous artworks that place themselves at the center. Continuing this tradition is Chicago-based artist Seamus Wray. He has recently delighted the internet with his series of self-portrait paintings that have a twist straight out of the movie Inception. What started as a single self-portrait has since morphed into something much more complex. Over the course of five artworks, he has painted himself painting himself…and painting himself again and again.

Wray intends for this artwork to be mind-bending in its execution. “The portraits were a continuation of a previous idea I have explored through my self-portraits, focusing on the concept of infinity,” he tells My Modern Met. Wray has shared every portrait on Reddit, where the pieces quickly rose on the site with upvotes. “They (the paintings) were also a social experiment of sorts, involving the captive internet audience, leaving them guessing if and when there will be another layer.”

Wray’s latest painting features five versions of himself (all wearing the same shirt) and one white cat. As he poses in person with the artwork, he is holding a black cat and a paintbrush. It’ll undoubtedly be the subject of his next self-portrait—although he’s not sure when. “I do have plans to continue them— in one way or another. Self-portraits have always been a theme in my art over the years, and no doubt will continue to be so.”

Wray sells his work as prints through his Threadless shop.

Artist Seamus Wray explores infinity through his series of creative self-portraits.

Creative Self Portrait by Seamus Wray

With each painting, they grow increasingly complex…

Infinite Self Portrait by Seamus Wray

Infinite Self Portrait by Seamus Wray

…and Wray has plans to continue his Inception-style portraits.

Infinite Self Portrait by Seamus Wray

Seamus Wray: Instagram | Threadless | Reddit

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Seamus Wray.

Related Articles:

Artist Creates 50 Self-Portraits in the Style of Popular Cartoon Characters

Magnetic Self-Portrait Meticulously Constructed with 7,000 Hand-Painted Screws

Artistic Duo Humorously Reimagine “Plein Air” Paintings as Unlikely Self-Portraits

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
Become a
My Modern Met Member
As a member, you'll join us in our effort to support the arts.
Become a Member
Explore member benefits

Sponsored Content