The Rebel (Biro)

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Day 99.

I sense the beginning of a new obsession coming on with this Artist.

You walk through a series of arches, so to speak, and then, presently, at the end of a corridor, a door opens and you see backward through time, and you feel the flow of time, and realize you are only part of a great nameless procession.

John Huston

Play things. (Biro)

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Day 86.

Playing with my toys. Having fun with my treasured items of diversion. It is still there the need to pull them out lay them on the ground and examine and appreciate them for all the possibilities they hold.

I like sitting on the floor like a child. I prefer the floor to chairs and couches most times. Something about being closer to the earth, to  the source. It is the same instinct that has me inclined to be barefoot most of the time. A more natural state. I like the the oriental style of dining on cushions with low tables.

I enjoy making a mess and assembling curious objects together for fun and inspiration. My lounge is my play room. It has got order. The toys are mostly hidden but I know they’re there and within an arms dump of being spread out across the rug.

These sketches were inspired by my Woody Allen Box set. A well loved toy that I turn to time and again.

The Human Jukebox (Video)

This is something that came out of me in 2013.

2013 began with the following prounoucement in The Sunday Times Style magazine:

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It had a ring of prophetic truth to it. Being the slippery fish that I am I took heed of the words. I engineered a road trip through the United States. Something I’d been sitting on since my teens.

I talked my Cousin David into partaking in the venture. The doing of it all unlocked some sort of secret. The realisation that I was making possible something unimaginably cool just by taking steps was almost unnerving. If this was possible then what?

When I asked him initially I was trying out the idea. Could I do something so wild and fun just for the sheer longing of doing it? I sensed it could.  Next the question whether I was ready to do try ?  Sure as hell I was.

The plan was to meet in New York. Hire a car there and drive it down to New Orleans where we would hang out for a week or so. The car was to be despatched once we hit our destination and both of us had our return flights booked to fly out of New Orleans within hours of each other.

Besides that very little else was planned

The route we opted for took us south west through Virginia, down into the deep south into Tenessee, then Mississippi and finally into Lousiana and New Orleans.

We made four stops and took six days to make the trip.

Our first two stops were motorway stops in Virginia. Longer stops were made in Nashville and in Memphis.

At the time of inception it occurred to me to make a video record of the adventure. It seemed important.

Study from film still. (Pencil)

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Day 64.

Masks and the theatre of being.

Do we wear masks for ourselves or for others? To shield or to project? To comfort ourselves or to ease the passage of our presence for those we meet? I am mystified by the idea. My face hides little and never has done.

I don’t understand the game. I am me,  you be you. What could be simpler?

If it is a game that is different. In a game I would expect to have a framework, points of entry, rules etc., known parameters. Like fencing. The game ends and the mask is removed.

But in daily human engagement the wearing of masks is confusing, disorienting and alienating.

Confusing as I don’t know why

Disorienting as I don’t know where I am

Alienating as I don’t know the what I am supposed to be.

I recall working in for a short period in a big high street retailer in London. After a few weeks I noticed my face falling into a forced mask like smile. It pained me to observe it happening as it did naturally. I knew it was time to get out.

My lair is my mask.

This drawing was done from a still of the Bergman film Persona.

The Subterranean

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Day 15.

Yesterday I got confused and mistook it for my fifteenth day. I guess that can happen when I alone am counting!

In keeping with the last couple of posts todays’ work is another painting in acrylics from my time in Malaga.

It is in landscape format with the appearance of being a triptych. This is due to the folds in the cardboard which works nicely as it breaks the picture into its natural thirds.

It is wholly an imaginative piece which sprang quite spontaneously from my subconscious. The creature in the centre section emerges from the swampy murk into a clearing. He is at the halfway point looking towards an opening. It has metamorphic qualities. It is a theme I dwell on a lot  and constantly seek out material that explore it in my reading and film choices. Unsurprisingly Kafka‘s Metamorphosis and other stories is one I often return to along with such David Cronenburg works as The Fly and his masterpiece Naked Lunch. What maybe my all time favourite film An American Werewolf in London is also about major transformational happenings of a very dark order.

I have another blog which is largely about style. It too concerns our ever changing selves  how we shed and acquire new plumages and skins and the fun we enjoy in doing it. It worth a peep I promise Suzieperon’s blog.

In my painting entitled The Subterranean the creature appears to have a white layer as an outer skin or coat and also a  red, his new underbody. He is shedding this outer layer as he moves from darkness towards light. Up from the ground and out of the depths he curves all wormlike.

As he faces into the right of the image the murkiness still hangs above but there is space and and light and perhaps even order on the horizon.

I am delighted with this piece. It rings so very true of myself. The composition and the colours reflect what I was unknowingly expressing and that brings me into balance somehow. It is a mirror of my unconscious. It has a strong story.

The colours are very muddied which is down to the poor quality of the paint applied on to a very absorbent brown cardboard. It really is not a great canvas for mixing paint on but in this instance I personally feel the work suffers very little for it.