“I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.” ― Edgar Allan Poe
At the last count, I think I had produced four or five portraits-or Poetraits as I call them-of literature’s Gothic master. My most well known I suppose is the one which graced Tourniquets album cover-‘Spoken Tales of a Tortured Genius.’
What is it that continues to fascinate and beguile me about the old absinthe soaked scribe?
Of course its the tales of mystery and macabre, and the Raven alone would secure his permanence way beyond the footnotes of cultural obsolescence, except he also wrote amongst a few classics, my personal favorite-The Tell Tale Heart. Perhaps syphilitic and out of his gourd when he died, it’s hard not to caste him as the archetypal alcoholic poet, sneering at the tragic barbs of life, and stumbling through muddy puddles in Maryland, but I daresay the reality is not as colorful.
“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
Arriving just weeks after the tail end of my Purgatorium show, and using another Tempest quote for the title, it would be easy to think that this piece, was an outtake of that particular series. Except to say, with its psychic locale changed from the Liverpool jiggers of my childhood (Scouse vernacular for alleyways) to the primal shores of the US, it’s concerns became much broader.
What’s it about then? Like a lot of my work, I think it deals with the ambiguous notion of place in society, of being a stranger in a strange land, or rather the idea that we are all immigrants in someone else’s territory-be it dogmatically rather than geographically. The territory here of course being the mythical land of America-the Infant Aztec Sun God, Hiutzilopochtli-dangled like Achilles over a river of fire by his adoptive Mother, Libertas, the Goddess of Freedom, who you will see is menstruating oil and wears a blazing crown of Scud Missiles.
It’s the moral abyss that comes at the cost of national idealism, and its currently on show at my studio, and available for purchase.
Other than a few small un-notable shows over a decade ago, I’ve not really had much opportunity to have my work exhibited in my home country. Which is why it is an absolute honor to announce, that I shall be working with London based and aptly titled Macabre gallery, who will be representing my Art alongside a pantheon that includes Saturno Butto, Tomasz Alan Kopera, Michael Hutter and a host of others.