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We cannot separate what we see from what we know. I feel that the child in us stubbornly remains within us always, therefore why not face the basic facts of image making honestly? Why should a painter be content to sit down before nature and paint it to the best ability? Why should we have to fill the demand that we should ‘paint what we see’? Everyone must have experienced how different the same place can look when we are happy or when we are sad. Therefore an art which deliberately changes the appearance of things to express a sense of superiority, or love, or fear, or outrage, or anger is something that everyone can relate to.
Art should, I feel, lay bare what I perceive to be the inner essence of things through expressive interpretation. These paintings began as simple experiments in media, a journey of combining violent brushwork, exaggerated perspective, colour and energy to create a heightened and distorted actuality. My intention within these works is to make an almost physical attack on its viewer, primitive and childlike figures are packed tightly to form a kind of jigsaw of chaos and madness.
Early on I decided what the general direction this work should be, that despite the horrors and disasters in this world, it would celebrate all positive values.
We are affected not only by actions and words but also by the mood of others –even by their thoughts. A work of art is a living force that can act according to the impulse that created it – serenity will transmit its calm, tension will infect in a negative way.
All of these paintings are inspired by events at the moment of their creation. Throughout this body of work there are reoccurring images which are very meaningful. I felt I needed something to link the work, to create a narrative. My cat appears in a lot of the pieces, but in a stylized form, he is a companion on my travels through the canvas.
As my style developed the subject matter changed slightly and became more abstract, figures still remain but became more ‘ghastly‘ and ‘grotesque’. Wild dogs and snarling beasts roam amongst the pale faced people and depict a more angry and dark side to the work