It’s been a long time since my last post, the better part of a year. In that time I have sold a house, gone on my first cruise ever and put together another solo show. I could write long posts on each one of these things but I’ll keep to the art news here.
As my post title indicates, my new show is titled The Body Speaks, and it is one in which I continue my fascination with the human figure and how we relate and respond to its myriad expressions. What began as a study of human relationships soon expanded into a look at out how our bodies have a language all of their own and how readily and instinctually we read and respond to each other’s gestures and postures. Below is a discussion of the works in the show.
The titles of two of the pieces in the show, Body of Work 1 – In Her Eyes and Body Of Work 2 – Mirror, Mirror, depict a collage of a body of work from two previous shows, ones in which I used images of the human body to communicate with my audience. The images moreover are laid out in a linear, foreshortened manner to allude to the way artworks are placed and viewed along a wall in a gallery. These two works, along with a third, entitled Puppet Master, which contains a multitude of prints hanging on strings from a bamboo crossbeam, illustrate the role of the artist as facilitator, with his ability to direct the viewer’s attention, influence his emotional response and generate a dialogue between people.
Several of the works in the show highlight the intensity and eloquence of the eyes and hands, our most expressive features. A pair of faces contrasts the promise of youth with the sageness of maturity, yet expresses a fiery spirit and strength of character that defies age. Hands caressing a lover’s body speak of passion and tenderness. A woman grabs her hair enigmatically, a man’s heart is seen in his bruised face, and another’s reclining on a bed.
Close-ups of other body parts give us enigmatic glimpses into the human condition. Bare feet amongst rubble and broken glass express a forlorn vulnerability. A bared back morphing into a tree trunk while an outstretched arm touches a stone wall evokes a sense of connectedness, strength and inner harmony.
Images of people together, whether touching or apart, reflect the bonds and boundaries of their relationships. The closeness of friends, embrace of expectant parents, the mirrored movements of mother and child, a lover’s gaze – all speak volumes without words.
A number of works illustrate the dichotomy of the more impersonal, yet strangely intimate, world of social media and smart phones, wherein our connections have taken on an ephemeral and intangible quality that is redefining human interaction. Photographs and video are superseding direct interaction while taking on key roles in the development of our online personas and avatars. The works in this show, by their own nature as photopolymer gravure etchings based on photographic imagery, illustrate this vividly.
All in all, the works express a wide range of human emotion and experience that I hope resonates with and engages the viewer. Whatever else the images may express, the connections made between model, photographer and viewer remain an underlining current in every work.
More images of the works in the show can be found here: (Click on slideshow for a larger view)
A video of the show by Exhibit-V can be seen here:
If you are in town please drop by and check out the artwork.
The show runs until June 9 at Collective Works Gallery, Victoria, BC, open Tues to Sun, 12-6pm