Now that Jordan Casteel's excellent Returning the Gaze exhibition has been extended at the Cantor Arts Center on the campus of Stanford University, it gives us a chance to share some of works in the show. As we have talked about so many times over the last year, the portrait has emerged as a powerful and political force for thesetumultuous times, and Casteel's portraits are a strong reminder of the power of identity who gets seen and unseen in not only our society, but on the walls of major museums. 

“I’ve always had an inclination toward seeing people who might be easily unseen," Casteel says of her work. The entirety of Gaze is work made from the last 5 years, portraits of the Harlem community she lives in. The show, which originated at the Denver Art Museum and now leads into her solo show at the New Museum opening February 19th, is a powerful reminder of the political importance of the portrait. At the young age of 30, the Yale grad is beginning to emerge as one of America's honest and great image makers.