Dying Woman


About the Artwork

Gary Hoff

About the artist:

I am Associate Professor of Medicine at the Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine where I have taught cardiology for many years. My career as an artist runs in parallel with my career in medicine. My work is primarily in oils and consists of commissioned portraits as well as landscapes and still life.


About the artwork:

Dying Woman is a portrait of my mother during the last month of her life, as she was dying of metastatic lung cancer. The drawing is in an old medium called silverpoint, which was the method used by old master painters long before graphite. It allows a precise but unerasable line to be laid down, so that the artist’s unfiltered first impressions always remain. Over time, silverpoint drawings mellow from dark and harsh to golden, in the same way that memories can.”


Visuals editor:

Justin Sanders



2 thoughts on “Dying Woman”

  1. Just lovely, I know this woman in so many different faces I have seen through the years…a haunting yet lovely vision!

  2. Stunning and haunting. I also very much enjoyed what you wrote. I think it’s safe to say you embody the words of Sir William Osler… “It is by your own eyes and your ears and your own mind and (I may add) your own heart that you must observe and learn.”

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