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In a Colour Jungle
After surviving 3 liver transplants and having the good fortune to be on long-term disability, I have returned to visual art. For the previous 20 years I was in electrical engineering. All along I somehow knew that my development as an artist would be ahead of where I left off when I quit Emily Carr Art College, if I started painting again. I now believe in what I have to say thru visual art. I never stopped looking at the world from the standpoint of a visual artist. My time as a consulting engineer has trained me to be much more tenacious in forming ideas. In consulting you must never trust anyone to do anything right ever, including one’s self. In the past year and a half I have managed to fill 3 volumes of sketchbooks with writing about materials, methods, and ideas. For the majority of that time my work has been autobiographical, however, the content of this show is not.
Proposal for the Show
The idea for having a show in this space originated with the owner, Larry Lechner. Before we knew we would go ahead with this, he asked me to help him paint his walls like one of the backgrounds of my paintings, so we got quarts of red, blue and yellow paint, some rags and a bucket of water and went to it. When it became apparent that I was going to be putting paintings on these walls, we tested them out against the gaudy background that I think is meant to inspire a few nutty musicians. The paintings disappeared into the wall. After a struggle with finding a suitable backdrop or frame for the paintings, Larry put his foot down and insisted that I live with the walls and depart from the norm. That is where the black and white concept arose. I took a new approach in the content also. After struggling with arduous, large biographical works, I chose smaller, less conceptual and looser ideas and methods. It was a joy to produce these.
Iconic and provocative, the works tackle simple subjects from a skewed angle. Sport gets turned inside out and re-assembled, while a penny becomes a statement. The domestic and simple crash into subversive and political.