Easter, for Christians, is the apex of their faith, centred on the resurrection of Christ. Here Christ defeated human ignorance, fear and limitation, not to mention mortality. Easter is a time of liberation, not emptiness and inertia.
My personal battle involves refusal to accept human atrophy and inertia wherever it appears to be at the expense of positivity and motivation. On many levels people have not engaged life as a natural driving force, especially the ‘couch-potato’ view of many who don’t question life at its core, but live life in the suburbs of the heart/mind/body/soul. For me the sedentary defeatism of today’s ‘Art’ can be seen in the backwaters of the painting medium, which in the UK doesn’t provide salvation, but a cynical manipulation of collectors who are advised to buy something ‘safe’ or invest in something immediately profitable. However, this is not a political statement - this is a critique of people who don’t actually think or contribute. If I were not to refer to a new era in the 21st century with all of its contradictions, its unique circumstances, then I too would paint watercolours with a hint of post-impressionism or, do conceptual fart.
But how am I going to strip inertia and embolden my work? Although I’m primarily a painter, I also used to write, though I’ve drawn a blank and have ‘writers block’ and also stopped reading. So I’ve drawn black idiosyncratic designs on strips of paper, insulated them from the detritus by laminating them, and presented them as bookmarkers. I am here showing my ambivalence to literature, but not to literacy. Literacy transforms lives and livelihoods, but if you cannot read, you are just as prone to limitations as those who are literate but who don’t get inspired to make their lives richer. Illiteracy can be as potent as economic poverty.
But what if someone could take away the sin of the world’s illiteracy by a metaphorical ‘bookmarker’ that didn’t tell you where you’ve stopped but told you where you can start again – that to my mind is where the greatest bookmarker is, that is, the Bible.
To aspire to this hope, I’ve linked all of these strips of laminated black ink with canvas cord, barely suspended from the ceiling, cascading and glistening like a chandelier, showering a message of motion and a rejection of inertia and atrophy.
See the images here