The Paris Suite is a small series of egg-tempera paintings executed while in residence at the Cite Internationale des Arts. The work represents a thread connecting the intentions of my earlier work and that which concerns me now.
Known as a figurative painter, my practice utilizes metaphor to express my interest in human relations and how we present ourselves. During my time in residence, I was struck by the Parisienne culture of celebrating the “jolie”. Walking the streets of Paris conscious of so many artists before me, I found myself looking up more often than not – I observed posturing figures perched upon columns; pieces of fruit or vegetable, singled out by providores for special consideration, often decorated by a pretty ribbon tied around the stem. I saw the melodrama of presentation in dress and behaviour. I was also drawn to the interiors of small cathedrals and was struck by the elongated form and grandeur of the Madonna, I recalled the rituals and altar-pieces of my childhood education. I was interested in the nobility of sacrifice as represented through the Madonna. I noticed the unusual silver light of Autumn in Paris. I mused that if cities have gender then Paris was female and in fact a mother.<
I felt embedded and inspired. The series I undertook suited the limitations of the studio space and I set about collecting glass-wear and arranging subject matter I came upon in a way that felt the sentiments I wished to convey. I worked long hours as days turned to night and feel that the series represents a particular artistic concern pertinent to the residency and as such, important in my practice.