Apparently, according to feminist writings that I've read in the past, the mirror in art represents the "male gaze". I am not above such weakness and debauchery and this is the closest thing I can get to the real thing nowadays.
Oil and pigment mixed to a coloured mud and applied to the surface of thin cotton stuck onto some kind of corrugated plastic stuff
Something by something similar in mm or inches
$ several pieces of printed paper or circular metal tokens
Well, I wanted to call this one "More Bottle". It's always a challenge coming up with interesting and relevant titles for still lifes (lives?) I was trying to paint this one with more gusto and vitality, and the saying "more bottle" popped into my head. It's funny how certain phrases resonate from our past and I'm sure I'm familiar with this as a saying, meaning to give something more life and vitality, or "more balls" - a turn of phrase that seems to be in more common usage in these parts. Anyway, I ran it past "She Who Knows" or "My Better Half", and she had never heard of it and suggested I "ask Uncle Google". Well, Uncle Google doesn't seem to have heard of the expression either, so I'm wondering if I just made it up myself. The closest I could get was "bottled out" or "not much bottle" from the Phrasefinder:
"...that is, 'useless; no good for anything'. This usage is recorded in a glossary of 19th century street English slang The Swell's Night Guide, 1846:
"She thought it would be no bottle, cos her rival could go in a buster." "
Well it may be archaic, but if you can have not much bottle surely you can have more bottle?
Anyhoo... It gives me something to write about and I have bottled out and called it prosaically "Still life With More Bottles".
I haven't ever been witness to this small amount of snow on our mountain for this time of year. It's been very warm and mild. This view is from the beach at Komene Rd where I walk every day, rain or shine. The farmer who runs stock there, has been clearing new ground and put in water troughs. It occurred to me as I painted this that it is a very elemental image : air - the blue sky, earth, water - the snow and the trough, and fire being the volcano, Mt Taranaki.
Regular visitors to this blog will have noticed I haven't been posting much. I have been working on larger paintings. Also, I'm finding that the small works are no longer selling like they used to. However, I enjoy painting them anyway, and will continue to do so as long as I can afford to. I got quite a shock when I went to order more paint supplies recently and found that the price has literally gone up by 100% here in NZ! In fact, for the first time it was cheaper for me to order internationally and pay the freight and import tax. This is a long round-about way of justifying why I've decided to put my prices up! I've kept the price of these paintings deliberately low over the last eight years or so , so that anyone can afford them. But I'd rather not sell them for a reasonable price than not sell them for a pittance. This is also a good thing for my collectors who have supported me, as their collections are now officially worth more!
Another bit of news: I am part of the Taranaki Arts Trail which takes place this weekend, for those living in or visiting Taranaki.
A while ago New World Supermarket were running some scheme involving miniature reproductions of their products, presumably to indoctrinate children into growing up to be good little consumers. I was especially fascinated by the banana which although of rather modest proportions was still vastly out of scale with the other products. It is difficult to tell the scale of the banana in my painting, indeed it is difficult to tell the scale of the painting itself from this image, and if I put this image onto Facebook it will be automaticly rescaled to some proportion that I have no control over. For some reason I find this amusing. It brings back schoolboy memories...... I recall being in hysterics over a gag by Kenny Everet a comedian of the times (1970s) who sang "you say bananas and I say bananas! Bananas! Bananas! Bananas! Bananas! Let's call the whole thing off!"
This is a postcard within a postcard or a painting within a painting if you like. The one pinned to the wall behind the bottles is from my colleague Marianne Muggeridge, and is a view of Mt Taranaki. The yellow D on the childs block is my partner Dales's initial. There seemed to be a lot of male/female elements going in this work and I toyed with the idea of calling it Anima Animus which is Jung's names for the male and female principle found in all of us. I can never remember which is which. A problem that only seems to get worse with age...