“Blue”

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I created a painting called “Blue” using my favorite color, Prussian Blue oil paint. Every time I look at it, I am reminded of the depth and versatility of this color. I can almost smell the linseed oil in my mind’s nose. The white unpainted space left on the canvas serves as a pause between the rich, deep blue color and the lean use of paint.

Prussian Blue has a magic to it that I find hard to describe. To me, it’s both “soft” and “magical”. Its ability to cling onto any surface is what makes it so special, but it also means I’ve ruined countless carpets, furniture, and floors with the paint, not to mention clothes like coats, pants, shoes, and shirts. Despite all this, my love for this paint remains unchanged and I will always keep a tube of it in my paintbox.

Tip: If you want to enhance the magic of Prussian Blue, try adding lots of linseed oil to the paint. This will increase the fluidity of the paint and make it spread smoothly over the surface. You can also play around with the feel of the painting by applying washes over previous layers of paint.

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fate handed you double vision

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I painted a hand and another hand appearing next to it, as though the viewer has double vision. The idea was intended to be comical and reminiscent of how cartoons might depict someone who is dizzy or cannot see well. Our perception can sometimes be skewed or distorted, and this double vision can make us question what is real and what is not. Perception plays a crucial role in how we interpret and make sense of the world around us. However, our perceptions are not always accurate, and they can sometimes be influenced by our emotions, beliefs, and past experiences. That’s why it’s essential to remember that, in this case, “fate” did not hand you double vision, I painted two hands.

Yellow rubber

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On January 10, 1992, a container holding 28,800 child’s bath toys accidentally fell into the North Pacific Ocean. The toys were shaped as red beavers, green frogs, blue turtles, and yellow ducks. Oceanographers Curtis Ebbesmeyer and James Ingraham from Seattle, who were working on an ocean surface current model, became interested in the release of these floating toys and began tracking their progress. Some travelled over 27,000 kilometres. The toys did not have any holes, so they did not absorb water and floated on the surface.

Forgotten Epidemic: Reflections on the 1991 Latin America Cholera Outbreak

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In 1991, Latin America was hit by a devastating cholera epidemic, which caused widespread illness and death. This historical event has been forgotten by many, but it evokes memories of Gabriel García Márquez’s famous novel “Love in the Time of Cholera,” which explores themes of love, passion, and heartbreak set against the backdrop of a cholera epidemic in South America.

Whenever I think of reading Gabriel García Márquez’s books, I associate it with the rich green colour of the jungle. In this painting, I used a beautiful dark sap green to interact with the hand, bringing a sense of vibrancy and life to the piece.

“Hands on Yellow”

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As an artist, I am constantly inspired by the world around me and the endless possibilities of colour and form. One of my favourite hues to work with is yellow, and I am particularly fond of this painting, which shows it in a unique and striking way.

In this painting, the hand rests comfortably in a window of warm yellow. I used a Cadmium yellow hue, which uses modern non-toxic pigments. This gives it a slight orange tinge that adds to the overall warmth of the oil paint.

One of the challenges of working with yellow is that it can be difficult to control and can easily smudge or spoil a piece. However, I applied the oil colour in a no-nonsense way that allowed it to settle confidently on the canvas.
Overall, this artwork is just a simple painting, it tells no story.
However, it has a presence and in its simple forms creates a sense of warmth and beauty.

A Ribbon of Memory: Exploring the Past through Art

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Art is a powerful way to explore memories. In this painting, I wanted to explore the past and the memories associated with a simple pin. The painting depicts a hand, with an actual pin and orange ribbon fixed onto the canvas of the painting. The pin is made out of tin and has a portrait of Wilhelmina, queen of the Netherlands embossed into the metal.

In 1997 I found the pin and other war memorabilia in a chest that was stored on our attic. The previous owner of the house must have left them there. Other items in the box were; a flag, a flint lighter and a grenade shard with razor-sharp edges. The roughly fabricated pin stayed with me over the decades, and in 1993, I pinned it to the painting. It creates an impression that the hand is going to pin the medal to someone, or that the medal has been pinned through the flesh of the thumb.

In this painting, I take a moment to reflect on how we use medals to preserve memories. For some, they serve as a reminder of the sacrifices and accomplishments of those who lived through a war. For me, it is a personal reflection on how I found a mysterious wooden chest with war memorabilia and how I kept this simple ribbon in my possession.

Hairspray in ozone

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“Hairspray in Ozone” is a painting that highlights the issue of environmental degradation and the impact of human actions on the planet. The painting depicts an inverse tattoo, a playful reminder of a past activity, but with a darker overtone as it symbolizes the damaging effects of human actions on the ozone layer.

The painting brings to mind the past overuse of hairspray, which contained chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), a substance that was banned from aerosol cans in 1994. The painting will remind me of the local hairspray factory that “accidentally” released their surplus CFC supply into the atmosphere, contributing to the damage of the ozone layer.

The painting reminds the negative impact of human actions on the environment. Today, we are hearing good news that the ozone layer is restoring, showing that our choice not to use CFC’s can have a positive impact on the environment.
Strangely enough, progress can be made when we do less, and this has a big positive impact on the health of our planet.

Kak su nasi stari jeli

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“Kak su nasi stari jeli” is a striking mixed media painting that brings to light the theme of war and its impact on everyday life. The title, which translates to “Look how our folks ate,” serves as a poignant reminder of the difficult times that many people in the Balkans faced during the war of the 1990s. The painting depicts a hand holding an original humanitarian aid package from food aid, which was distributed in Croatia in 1992, symbolizing the dire circumstances that many individuals were forced to endure.

The painting serves as a personal reminder of the devastating effects of war on communities and individuals, leaving many without housing or food. However, now more than 30 years later, Croatia is a member of the European Union and the Schengen area, providing a stark contrast to the difficult past.

The painting brings to mind the ongoing theme of humanitarian aid and its crucial role in times of crisis, not only in the Balkans but also in war-torn Ukraine. Humanitarian aid serves as a lifeline for many, providing basic necessities such as food and shelter.

“Kak su nasi stari jeli” is a painting that delves into the themes of war, displacement and humanitarian aid. Every day, we face challenges in Europe that remind us to always be mindful of the ongoing humanitarian crisis.

Brixton

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I created this painting, titled “Brixton,” in 1995. It features a hand printed on canvas and painted the shapes with black and yellow oil color. This contrast reflects the events that took place in Brixton in 1995, when hundreds of black and white youths protested the death of a black man in police custody. The resulting riots led to injuries, destruction of property, and arson. The silhouette of the hand in the painting is of petrified onlooker staring directly into the bright, burning flames of the riots.

Broken Moratorium: Reflecting the Devastation of Nuclear Testing

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In 1993, I created a painting entitled “Broken Moratorium” in which I wanted to convey the devastating effects of nuclear radiation on the human body. The painting was made by cutting the canvas into small blocks and reassembling them, much like how a human hand would be torn apart by exposure to nuclear radiation.

The topic was headline news as China exploded a nuclear weapon at a test site beneath its western desert, breaking an informal testing moratorium. This event serves as a stark reminder of the destructive power of nuclear weapons and the ongoing threat they pose to humanity.

As an artist, I believe that it is important to use my work as a reminder of important social and political issues. I want to raise awareness and work towards a safer, more peaceful world, and to strive for further nuclear disarmament.