Paintings

 

“Adrift, into The Otherworld”

you created us with thirsty hearts; gouache on paper

“You created us with thirsty hearts” – the Egyptians believed that the human heart contained all the good and bads deeds of a person’s life, and was used to judge whether that person was worthy of entry into the afterlife. After the person died, their heart was weighed against the feather of Maat, the goddess of truth and justice. Whilst the feather and heart are not depicted above, the two characters holding spanners are attempting to fix/cheat fate, they are Sisyphus from Greek mythology, who was punished by Hades for cheating death twice.

the heavens are indifferent, life is just a game of chance; gouache on paper

“The heavens are indifferent, life is just a game of chance” – Maat, the Egyptian goddess of truth and justice, who continuously prevents the Universe from returning to chaos, takes a chaotic form (Yama, detailed below) balanced on a ‘Lucky 8 Ball’. The Gaesatae were a group of Gallic mercenary warriors from the Alps, who fought against the Romans, naked. Sisyphus is transformed into a Sprite from folklore. All characters are under the spell of the Red Sun.

on the last day of existence; gouache on paper

“On the last day of existence, the moon waxed and waned, the sun agonized, the earth wept” – the triptych of Druid cosmology, the Red Sun, the Moon, the Earth. Below, Yama the Buddhist deity, the judge of the dead, who presides over Hell and the cycle of rebirth. Birth/ Rebirth to the right, Death to the left (the Moaning hell realm).

Elf-struck; gouache on paper

“Elf-struck” – if taken ill, you may be elf-struck, your body pierced by a poisoned elven arrow. In Cumbrian folklore, the elves got the arrows from faeries, who got them from mermaids.

Process

The works of Alan Davie, Yayoi Kusama, Niki de Saint Phalle, Hieronymous Bosch, and Richard Dadd have had the greatest impact on my own pursuit of expression.

Above, is a selection of my current paintings, and a brief explanation of their meaning. Having studied tradition Buddhist thangka art, and whilst mainting the symmetry, religious Deities are replaced by characters from folklore and mythology. All paintings are gouache on paper, 36cm x 54cm.