New small series: Parts of an Artist.£POA
A Wing and A Prayer. Four ~A2 sanguine sketches, now beautifully box and float framed.
Something new, an experiment in colour pencil. Centaur Dreams in Sanguine 6220. 1m x 1.2m. Fabriano paper.
Last year’s work (2017) concentrated on a more political than personal theme. The content is loaded with references and suggestion to current affairs and angst on the human condition. The year started with a well known composition re-imagined for ‘Nativity 2016’. A traditional Nativity scene loaded with contemporary reference to the war zone of Aleppo and broader reference to the way we have ‘consumed’ this tragedy as it unfolded in the media. This marks a departure for me from my autobiographical works and a new thread of inspiration that fulfils my personal philosophical and political thoughts and the start of the ‘Naivety Drawings’ in 2017. This particular drawing was shortlisted in three national open competitions last year but has finally made it through and has be selected for exhibition at The Chiaya Art Award at Gallery@oxo South Bank London in April 2018. It won the Osanna Prize and the Bezalel Prize.
This also led on to five other large charcoal interpretations of Eugene Delacroix series of paintings called ‘Christ on the Sea of Galilee ‘circa 1854. My interest in this series was sparked by the Delacroix exhibition in London in 2016 and the small painting of a fishing boat in stormy waters with the Apostles in panic whilst Christ rests un-phased in the ‘very yellow’ glow of his halo, safe and sound. A fifth Delacroix painting ‘The Barque of Dante’ has also been subverted to include the phone motif in the hands of Dante and Virgil on their way into Hell.
The ‘glow’ and body language we are so familiar with now from our phones and tablets etc. are used here in commentary on the ‘good books’ of religion; ideas of faith, religions, hope and answers to the big questions. Studying these old masters and reinterpreting these small paintings into larger monochrome charcoals is very rewarding. I refer to them as ‘conversations or chatting with Delacroix’ as it feels to me very much like a technical lesson as well a philosophical enquiry on the content.
The Minotaur series from 2017 were created for National Open Art Competition. The Young Minotaur got into the Top Ten of MS Amlin/TNOAC World Art Vote and the ‘Muse’ and ‘Old Minotaur’ were drawn to create a triptych as Artist In Residence at The Bargehouse Oxo Towers on South Bank London.
Other more personal works continue a to tell long stories short.
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