Mrs May and her Cabinet Conferring.
This picture was made over a prolonged time in 2017 and it changed as the Maybot and her hapless crew lurched from disaster to catastrophe. So we can see several faces in the picture which probably don’t need me to introduce them, but just in case. The large square eyed and narrow nosed, insectile face in the upper left is Hammond the Chancellor. Next to his right ear we see the small shrewish figure of Gove buzzing in his ear( made I think from the remains of a data stick ). Immediately below we see the ghastly Maybot herself. From the left of her mouth we see an “alien ” speech bubble rising up and crossing to the the top right of the picture. This to accentuate the feeling that this lot are more than a bit inhuman which I think most ordinary people feel. Below the speech bubble and a bit to the right of centre we a clownish buffoon like face who really needs no introduction who remains our Foreign Secretary. Immediately below the Maybot we can see a regular grid like structure which represents the Grenfell tower, above it, a green arrow points to what is dearest to the hearts ot these characters. Throughout the picture I have used lots of burnt plastic in smoky reds and darker colours to represent the smoke which billowed from the Grenfell tower as so many of its residents died.Along the bottom of the picture we can see two blue v shapes which some have compared to pigs trotters but I meant to be Tory fingers raised in a v sign, doubled, to represent the intensity of the dislike and contempt this lot feel for the people they rule over. In between the speech bubble and the central blue v we can see the face of one of the Tory party supporters, grinning maniacally as we lurch into the disaster of Brexit” Yes Master ,more Master ,more more” we can imagine him saying. In between the blue v’s we can see an exhortation to all those who are like me ,sick of this craven gang of bigoted numpties. RISE , RISE AS ONE and let’s get shot of them.
The World Weighs Heavy
This picture is another example of my use of a readymade frame. Made in 2016 I was deliberately referencing” The Scream ” by Edvard Munch in the use of of the black mask like shape in the lower right foreground. I made it more face like by filling in one ” eye hole” and the “mouth hole” and in the latter case cutting a down turned mouth. The other eye was was deliberately made from some sort of small square mount laid on its corner with a contrasting colour pupil. This lent a sort of stunned or surprised look to the face.All of the constituent materials of the picture were found on beaches and later worked to make the picture. They include heavily tarnished aluminium or zinc alloy sheet,bronze and leather drive chain, fibreglass and assorted plastics. Sold 2017.
New World 34.
This picture represents the more optimistic and outward looking world of the 60’s and 70’s. It began with the finding of a small enamelled badge saying ” new world 34″ which I think came from a cooker. This was during the time of early space exploration so there are Sputnik shapes in the picture eg centre foreground ( which, lucky find , is even labelled “star” ) . Smaller ones can be seen upper right border of the picture. Satellites of other sorts soon followed into space and we all confidently looked forward to holidays on the moon and having atomic robots to do the housework. “New worlds ” was the name of a very influential Sci fi magazine from this time. One of its first editors was Arthur C. Clarke who was the man who invented satellite technology. So the picture represents us and the world looking out anticipating our exploration of the planets. Thus our world is surrounded by the black and white framing material, probably an old canvas and rubber drive belt, heavily worn and eroded after prolonged exposure on a foreshore. All I did was snip off the loose fibres of canvas and rubber fragments. The resulting appearance of contours is exactly what you get if you photograph any part of the observable universe in infra red, which is also known in Astro-physical circles as the cosmic microwave background radiation. So the world is properly surrounded by the frame representing space.
Oh Aleppo , made in 2016 in response to seeing what was happening there in the Syrian civil war. Beachcombed and worked plastics mostly on plywood framed with the rim of a large oblong box lid. The picture represents the bombed streetscapes of Aleppo with just the skeletons of buildings, smoke and flames within and above them,rubble before them. A burnt and distorted doll’s arm (as found) reaches up for help and symbolises the people of Aleppo. The fragments of letters seen throughout the picture represents the broken cries of those trapped in the situation. The much smaller dolls leg seen in the lower foreground represents every parents nightmare, the destruction of their children.
Mixed Messages No 2.
Second in the series. Mixed beachcombed and worked materials all framed within a very worn tyre wall/rim which in cleaning began to assume the tattered look so I exaggerated that look a bit by tearing bits off the edge. Sold in 2017.
A fragment of flotation buoy which has been so long in the sun that the surface had bleached. Scraping this bleached surface reveals the original colour beneath. This technique is called sgraffito. I used a piece of green plastic to provide contrast both to the pink buoy fragment and to the textured black plastic I used for the backing. All framed with the rim of a plastic tub lid which makes a ready made frame. Sold in 2017 at Rock House Goes POP show.
Wilson-Lost at Sea. Clearly referencing the Tom Hanks fllm and able to do so ‘cos I found a “Wilson” American football on the beach. Part of it can be seen in the picture. This was exhibited as part of my 2016 show ” Mixed Messages ” at MOMA. Sold there too.
Feber Feber 4 in line,in progress. So named after the words on the yellow wheel. Sold in 2016. You can see the as found nature of my raw materials, beachcombed fragments of man made stuff which just shouldn’t be on beaches.
Work in progress,2017/18. Untitled as yet. Made from the usual variety of man made materials which one can find on a beach these days.
Finished but untitled as yet. Away at the framers now. Deliberately more ” architectural ” in the choice of materials for this one. Beachcombed( and worked ) plastics for the most part.
Steel crisis. Sold 2016. Beachcombed and worked plastics, rubber and perspex. Framed in part of a tyre, used as found apart from a thorough wash and scrub.
The Future of Haverfordwest. Sold 2016.
Feber Feber 4 in line, finished and framed for exhibition at MOMA 2016
A selection of artworks
Glassy tree –After Hockney.
This was inspired by part of a picture by Hockney painted I think in the Eighties, showing a scene from a Mid western prairie farm.I can’t remember its name, but there is a barn and in the background a tree.Its only a small part of the original composition but I could see that it would be reproducible in glass.The finished version doesn’t really look that much like its inspiration but I think it’s quite good.I have a soft spot and great admiration for Hockney and have derived inspiration from several of his pictures.
Park Avenue after GK
GK was Gustav Klimt,and this image is part of the composition of his picture Park Avenue. When I saw it I wanted to try and make it in glass.I didn’t realise what a task I’d taken on. I took absolutely forever to make the smaller and smaller parts of the drive ( to convey perspective ), but I persevered. I like the result.
Zen Garden at Ryoanji after Hockney.
I’ve said in other posts that I have a bit of a thing for Hockney’s work.This is based on one of the Polaroid pictures which Hockney made on a visit to Japan.I had to strip all elements but two, the concentric grooves raked into gravel by the Zen monks and the rocks which sit like islands on the sea of gravel, from the original picture. I knew when I saw the original I wanted to use some of the big burnt glass lumps I have found here and there.The end result isn’t quite what I saw in my minds eye and I will try to revisit this idea.First find the burnt glass lumps and then make a better fist of engraving the lines around them,maybe change the composition a little also.
Windsurfers at Plouarzel
I’m being a bit ironic when I call myself an international artist, but I really have exhibited in three countries. England, France and Wales.
I got asked to be part of a group exhibition of recycling artists by French ” pinceur ” Jean-Jaques Petton, who organises them.Pinceur translates as beachcomber I believe.Like me ,Jean-Jaques gets his art materials from beaches.Did’nt sell a thing but had a good time in Brittany and found inspiration for this picture from a tourist leaflet.Lovely beaches in Brittany and astonishingly clean.Only found one piece of plastic on the beach while there, but that did become part of another picture about a famous French footballer.Thats another story however.
Stormy Clouds over Trees and River
There is a reason for the apparent gap at the bottom of the picture .It is designed to sit in a groove cut into a granite cobble I cut for this purpose.That way in can sit on a window shelf and be movable.Should get a photo of both together.