During 2011 I found myself suddenly returning as an artist to a theme that had engaged my attention during my former working life as a sociologist, namely, the nature and significance of masks. Possibly this was prompted by an encounter with the Italian Commedia dell'arte
. The result was a series of exploratory pieces dealing with different aspects of this theme, approached from very different angles. Bark Prophet
really stands at the margin of another interest from this period, in the expressive character of tree barks. Biker
are all elements of a single triptych, exhibited under the collective title Protection Racket
. They are very much intended to reflect upon and play off each other.
My work does not often arouse controversy, but Dottore della peste
certainly did when it was shown in Wetherby, where it apparently caused great offence to a group of evangelical Christians--quite against my intentions. In fact, I regard it as one of the few of my works that might be regarded as expressing a direct religious commitment.
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