A New Body Of Work
If you’ve been following the blog in the last couple of weeks you will know that I’ve been sharing with you some of the different series of works I have painted and how they came about. Today I would like to share with you the latest body of work which is centred around exploring current issues and challenges facing displaced persons and refugees.
This new body of work, examines the underlying problems facing them and their hopes for a better life.
Where can you see it? – it will be exhibited at the Ruby Samadhi gallery in Kincumber When can you see it? – 1 December to 31 December 2016, more details to follow.
As with some previous bodies of work, this one did not emerge from my fascination with a particular subject or in this case even a conscious awareness around the topic.
I had recently come back from a trip to New Zealand and as I was about to begin a new series of work I thought I would try to loosen up my style somewhat. Although I enjoyed the previous series of works which were floral in nature, by the time I got to the end of that series my work had become quite tight and I wanted to remedy that. I picked a palette of colours and started splashing paint around, endeavouring to work very intuitively and abstractly. However as the work progressed I began to see figures emerging from within it.
When the painting was nearly done I was wondering what title to give it when the word refugee popped into my head. At the time I couldn’t figure why, why refugee??? Although the figures in the middle of the painting do look very frightened and harrowed.
A short while later, I was talking to one of my students about the painting. We had previously been discussing how I would like to return to live in New Zealand as I currently live in Australia. At this point in time however, that is not an option for me. When I was telling her about the painting being called Refugee, she looked at me and looked at the painting and said ‘but you’re a refugee, aren’t you? ‘ I was quite astonished as I’d never thought of myself as such.
This got me to thinking further about refugees and displaced persons and so the birth of a new series began. I then quickly developed several paintings from this first one. These subsequent works related to the emotional challenges and hopes that a refugee or displaced person feels. I feel like a displaced person rather than a refugee. The thing we share in common is being cut off from our homeland, although perhaps in different ways.
After that I turned to my source material, the photos I had taken on my recent trip to New Zealand and it all began to come together.
Next week I will share further highlights of this journey as we approach the count down to an exhibition of them.
This Weeks Question: What can we do individually to help alleviate the misery of refugees in our own country.
Look For Next Week’s Post: Why Go To An Art Fair – 3 Fantastic Reasons Why You Should