This painting was made specifically for an exhibition at @leamingtonstudioartists in which artists were invited to create work in response to T.S. Eliot's poem “The Waste Land”. The exhibition is part of a wider project called Journeys with "The Waste Land", currently on at @the_herbert_cov , @coventry_cathedral and organised by the @mead_gallery , Coventry. Also shown at @turnercontemporary. There have been a variety of fantastic events to do with the project - all of them delving into the mind of T.S. Eliot and the contemporary relevance of his poem today.
My painting is currently on exhibition at East Lodge Gallery, Leamington Spa the headquarters of Leamington Studio Artists. The exhibition is a fascinating treat with a variety of artists interpretations of the poem.
Artwork description tag:
“What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow
Out of this stony rubbish?”
For me the poem is a potent reflection of the years that followed the Great War. The feelings that come with war still evident in the human fabric of everyday life- disillusionment, anger, lamentation. I doubt many could escape the trauma of this period and I think such events hang heavy over the poem.
My painting is meant to be ambiguous, it isn’t a direct representation but rather a disorientated and fragmented vision; much like that of the The Waste Land itself. It has no focal point or real composition and the frantic nature and bleak earthy tones signify the state in which Eliot found himself in. If I’d have to associate something with the painting, it’d be the grotesque nature of war. Maybe one could see it as a trench, or of collapsed earth and rubble. The only promise is a hint of muddied blue- possibly a window of hope and rebirth.