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Image of a framed landscape painting of green hills and stone walls, on a wall above a sideboard with a twiggy plant and wood sculpture on it

'The Lay of the Land'

Mixed media (acrylic, wax crayon & pastel) on paper, 2021

58.5cm x 73cm

(image shows framed artwork for illustration purposes only)

My current work explores spaces, landscapes and structures—man-made or organic, and the relationship of one against and within the other.

It can be blatant or hinted in my paintings, but as I work, I’m cognizant of how man has stamped his boots on the earth, built monumental engineering and architecture, created environments and populated landscapes—later discarding those creations and moving on when use has been fulfilled.

Even in the quietest, most windswept and unpopulated places, there are still often signs of human presence. A path or wall, a signpost or telegraph pole. Signs of interference—past or present.

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I find humanity’s relationship with our planet both fascinating and repellent. Humans are parasitic creatures of Earth—we’ve done so much environmental damage while civilisation has evolved—and yet our capacity for invention, creation and innovation is magnificent. Outside of politics and big business, we have the creativity to start redressing the balance and repair some of the destruction we’ve caused, and it’s exciting—and heartening—to hear about such endeavours.

While the bright-shiny-new-things will always grab magpie-like attention, the story of man’s left-behind places is also frequently an interesting one. Whether it's a story of decay and return to the earth, or one of life breathed back and a renewed purpose given.