Monday, 13 November 2017

Hanging Out To Dry

Studio View, Nov 2017
I finally completed, well I think I have completed but you never know, what will be the last of a small series based on homeless shelters situated next to my place of work. 
oil on canvas, 60 x 100cms, 2017
oil on canvas, 25 x 40cms, 2017

I say that these are shelters in the loosest sense of the word, being largely comprised of duvets and sleeping bags slung over branches, as well as a more robust tent, which now months on since I first spied this ‘camp’ is still there and doesn’t show any signs of moving just now.
'Paper Boat', oil on canvas, 80 x 60cms, 2017
The strangest sight was a shelter made of a large green plastic sheet wrapped around some sort of a frame that had seemed almost blown onto the pavement. Trying to translate the experience of seeing this into paint was the biggest challenge. It looked like some sort of desperate paper boat floating adrift, which is what I have decided to title it.  
'A Home In England', oil on canvas, 40 x 60cms, 2017
I worked over this one above, having previously liked it, but then I felt it did not sit that well with the others and had not gone far enough. 
'Hung Out To Dry',oil on canvas, 100 x 100cms, 2017
This larger, final one, with bin bags like bodies or ‘strange fruit’ hanging from the trees above the dirty mattress, the roadside a few yards away, was difficult, and I’m not sure I quite nailed it, but I know I don’t know how to do any more on it either. I need to sit with it a while, having only finished it this week, but it does mark the completion of this series. In ways I find hard to put into words, I have found it quite an emotional series of paintings to work on. 

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