I have been working in a form of encaustic collage since December 2019.
I enjoy the way that detail can be built up quickly using paper and coloured wax.
I work on boards found on the streets, using spray paint, images found in old books, beeswax, coloured wax and oil pastels exploring various techniques. Some boards are blank to start with others have existing paint and textures which I incorporate. I enjoy fashioning an idea or a fantasy out of objects that already exist.
During the restrictions of the Covid-19 lockdown it has been an invaluable means of expression.
Over time I hope, like my ceramics, they will build to become a narrative of this unprecedented time in all of our lives.
Below are the boards in order of making:
No.1 Garden of Online Delights Tryptich
It all began by finding a fireguard on the street and imagining it as a ready made tryptich.
I inserted board which had heavily weathered paint, enhanced with spray paint and decorated with paper and wax adding a salvaged velvet backing.
The first panel depicts The Fool from the tarot walking amidst ladybird book flowers. He is starting out on the journey to find love.
The central panel shows a medieval wounded man with his mobile phone and a halo of urine testing sticks is gazing over a shoal of medieval naked women sat astride flying penises who swim amongst the bottom feeders.
The third panel shows The World, the last tarot card.
The end game, what we all dream of but a skull lies among the flowers reminding us that everything dies.
Fireguard, board, paper, wax, paint, velvet h 66 cm w 89 cm
No 2. Creation
St Francis stands holding microscopic form in a land of giant flowers and rocks.
Below him are Heironomous Bosch creatures crawling up onto the land.
Above is a medieval illustration of an incoming comet. A sign of impending doom.
Paper beeswax and oil pastels on board 38x38cm
No 3. Ritual
A background of the most extensive firework display ever seen celebrating peacetime in
Hyde park, July 1919.
Approaching from the right characters from a devil dance performed by Mongolian monks and to the left Javanese costume used in Wayang wong. Siamese fighting fish and Samurai.
Paper, wax, oil pastelson rough street board with glue. h38 x 41 cm
No 4. Cv19MMXX
This piece was made during the transition from usual daily life to just before lockdown of March 2020.
Read from left to right in the distance are the towers of the old establishment, a dinosaur swims below and microscopic water bears floating in the sky.
On an island of microscopic organisms stands the lady from the margins with her flying penis looking with longing to an island where a Blemmyes stands looking back at her.
Further to the right past the shells and the goose barnacle a mythical medieval Bishop fish explains something to neanderthal man beneath a pill bug moon.
Up ahead are the dark fears.
Paper, spray paint and beeswax on found board 23 x 107 cm
No 5. Death March
This salvaged board had been
used as a masking tool by graffiti artists and covered in many layers of paint.
The markings were built up over time to form a multi layered landscape to which I have added paper images sealed with wax.
A solar eclipse bears down.
The characters of Death move closer . An army assembles.
Made at the time lockdown was announced.
Board, spray paint, paper, beeswax 50 x 42 cm.
No5. The Star
The central meaning of The Star in tarot is hope. It is reminder that destiny is always at play and to be patient.
A chaotic noisy garden of plants and souls clamber toward the distant star that hangs motionless and unattainable.
Board, spray paint, beeswax, oil pastels 41.5 x 46.5 cm.
No 6. Defying the Dance of Death
Danse Macabre or Dance of Death was a medieval allegorical concept of death as the great leveler.
Traditionally it depicts a procession of dead figures leading the living of different status to the grave.
The central figure here is a flapper from the 1920's dressed as a butterfly. The type of woman who flaunted their disdain for what was considered acceptable behavior.
Prepainted board with spray paint, paper, beeswax and oil pastels 41 x 41 cm.
No. 7 Isolation
This piece of board was donated to me after being salvaged from Jamaica Street Studios, Bristol.
It had been used to doodle on, mix paint and shows multiple rings where jars of paint had been put down to form a rich surface that cannot be replicated.
Characters look out into the space around their own islands of isolation wondering how long they have to live with themselves.
Featuring icon of isoloation
Milky Joe from The Mighty Boosh.
Teak board with mixed paint, ink, paper, wax, oil pastels. 46x 46 cm
No 8. Onwards & Inwards
Likewise the board used here had been used as a painters palette and then discarded.
Small paper cutouts and wax have been added and oil pastels blended in with the rich background colour to form a loose frenetic dreamscape.
Made three weeks into lockdown.
Board, mixed paints, paper, wax, oil pastels.
44.5 x 39.5 cm
No 9. Two Metres
This smaller board was donated to me by Chris Chalkley at Peoples Republic of Stokes Croft. It is part of a wall that had been painted by graffiti artists over fifty times.
The surface has been carved back in places to reveal the paint underneath. Wax and paper have been added in corresponding colours.
The result is a microscopic landscape set in the many layers of graffiti history before the virus.
Chipboard, spray paint, wax, paper 33 x 25.5 cm
No 10. Fool's Paradise
Week four of lock down and I had no idea where this piece was going whilst I was in the process of making it.
It was only once it was finished that it dawned on me that it was Fool's Paradise: a happy state that one inhabits for foolish, unfounded or delusional reasons.
Paper, spray paint and beeswax on board
72.5cm X 35cm.
No 10. Untitled
Borne of frustrations and internal wranglings this ball of dark desires squirms across the reclaimed board.
Paper, spray paint and beeswax on board
Open the doors peer in to the inviting chocolate box landscape of Italian lakes and garden flowers.
Flick the switch to light the interior.
Turn the handle to play Que Sera Sera.
Keep looking further to the dark message within and then a reflection of your own eyes for the answer to the riddle.
Photography Mr Colin Moody
The Last Horse of the Apocalypse
According to the 1972 prog rock classic by Aphrodite's Child the Last Horse of the Apocalypse is Green.
This well sculpted resin horse from Italy was an impressive found object from Easton, Bristol.
When I came to me it was brown and covered in mouse droppings.
Now it heralds The End of Days.
The porcelain piece made to add to it was the only surviving object to come out of the last firing of my malfunctioning kiln. The piece withstood hours of 1400 degrees and yet remarkably still fitted onto the base. The whole piece is painted with spray and acrylic paint.
This object is about violent endings and fierce new beginnings.