Every Painter Paints Himself (EPPH) | Art’s Masterpieces Explained

Every Painter Paints Himself (EPPH) provides clear and concise explanations of Western masterpieces and reveals the universal themes around which artists have long weaved visual illusions. It is intended to make the study of and analysis of art accessible and relatable, and to perhaps, offer an alternative way of ‘looking at’ artistic works.

Users have the option to explore works by theme or by artist.  The ‘galleries‘ contain higher resolution images, enabling users to view works in greater detail; while the ‘essays‘ offer more comprehensive discussion of selected works.  Both sections are intended to supplement ‘themes‘ & ‘artists’.   

EPPH was conceived of and is maintained by Simon Abrahams, an independent art historian.



  • Themes: Alter Ego, Poetic Mind, Eye, Craft, Metamorphosis, Spiritulity  



Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Self Portrait (1982):

“No regular user of this site could fail to recognize that the arrow held in the outstretched arm below is a “paintbrush”. It may look like an arrow but that’s what paintbrushes can sometimes resemble in an artist’s mind. Arrows are, in an archer’s hands, accurate, swift, powerful, violent and able to penetrate the human body. See, for example, paintings of St. Sebastian under Brush and Palette. All visual poets seem to understand this though no writer on art, as far as I know, has ever noted it. Yet Jean-Michel Basquiat at the age of twenty-two had a deep, visceral understanding of art.”  

ThemesEvery Painter Paints Himself 

Every Painter Paints Himself (EPPH) | Art’s Masterpieces Explained