(b Monroe, Wash, 5 July 1940).
American painter. His early work was Abstract Expressionist, but he soon turned to Superrealism, becoming well known for huge portrait heads (mainly of friends), seen frontally like gigantic passport photographs—his self-portrait (1968) in the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, is almost 3 m (10 ft) high. Originally he worked in black and white, but in about 1970 he turned to colour. He works from photographs, dividing them into a grid and then transferring the grid to the canvas. In some of his later work he has deliberately emphasized the grid, creating ‘low resolution’ images resembling a computer scan or a face seen through frosted glass. In 1988 Close was partly paralysed following an injury to a spinal blood vessel, but he resumed painting with the aid of a brace support on his wrist.