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Exhibition 2013: "Drawing you in"

at M16: 3 October 2013

Works: mixed media on paper, 67 x 42 cm

These images are compiled from lithographs, paintings and drawings I have done over the last thirty years which are digitised and compiled in Photoshop. The images are printed with an inkjet printer on Arches paper. I then draw into the print according to how I wish to interpret the image, with some areas being highlighted and some being deleted or muted. My medium is coloured pencils and pastels which can give a transparent or an opaque effect. New images are added which I draw over the printed image. These are selected to amplify the symbolism of the work and consolidate the landscape composition. The resulting images represent the three layers consisting of foreground, middle ground and background. This achieves a three dimensional appearance. I have restricted the colour palette to sepia with spot colour added. This is to allow the symbolism full effect without the distractions of strong colour and high key contrast.


1. "Tower of power"

Death strikes down the powerful as well as the humble. The best way to deal with it is to laugh. The famous faces have their roots twined around a pedestal which is also doomed to rot. They are not grounded. They are without the nourishment of the earth.

2. "From the cradle to the grave"

For the extent of our lives we are beset by demons. The baby is encircled and protected by love. But by the time we reach old age, with the deaths of friends and family, the love and protection falls away and we have to face our demons alone.

3. "A picnic for one"

This is about the lonliness of the long distant mother. Remembering the family picnics of her childhood, the mother tries to do the same for her children. But the family has disappeared. She holds out a drink for an absent friend, whilst the real friend is drowning in the desert sand which the bird of prey hovers.

4."Generation — degeneration"

All the grandparent have died, but the symbol of eternal love lingers on, its sweetness is undiluted by social mores that dictate who deserves love and who does not.

5. "Message from the horsemen"

The four horsemen bring the message to the children that the sun alone is the source of life. The alphabet blocks spell this out but the children are too young to read. They wear grown up clothes which symbolises the knowledge they will need to understand the horsemen's message.

6. "His house on the hill"

The women are clothed in dispossession and poverty so their child is taken away to an unknown future. The man who lives in the house on the hill could intervene, but his priority is either winning hearts or bending others to his will.

7. "Empty frames, empty lives"

Women suffer from being unfulfilled. The artist stands by the empty frame to attend to her children and the model wearing the bird hat is a half a women. Thier fragile consciousness is locked away. Life is simplier in the wild.

8. "The psychopath next door"

Psychopaths wear a mask of normality. The animals and the birds stand between the woman and the psychopath's beguiling charm, allowing her to ignore him and focus on herself.

9. "The evil men do"

The psychopath has captivated a vulnerable woman. He brings hellfire and brimstone down on her head. He controls the dark forces and all she can do is look away in shame.

10. "Monkey mother"

The seas rise and the monkey mother is forced to take shelter on a stoney island just above the water line. Man's architectural conceit is buried beneath the waves and the vultures are well fed.

11. "No place like home"

Within domestic walls, life goes on, flavoured with the brutality of the man towards the woman. The children don't know that this is their fate as they play and enjoy what's left of the afternoon sun. The alphabet blocks, thrown like dice, fall into incomprehensible patterns.

12. "A heartfelt song"

The graves of the ancestors surround the little church on the hill. The latest generation laughs at the oldies singing their prayers, knowing that God is too busy to listen and if He did, He is indifferent to their suffering.

13. "The agent of destruction"

She pours snakes along with her scorn onto the fallen woman. She is the agent of the woman's destruction. But she doesn't know that her pets snakes will turn on her and punish her for her self-righteousness.

14. "Below sea level"

The rising seas sweep away lives. She sits naked with her baby watching her home disappear beneath the angry waves. Meanwhile animal kind follows the laughing leader away from the danger.

15. "A sea of troubles"

The woman is unaware of the danger that surrounds her. Her hobby horse carries her and her little girl away from the reality of the rising damp. The real horses dance in the waves, making their escape while the bird rises above it all.