The emotional impact and narrative potential of portraits continues to draw me to paint the human figure. The inspiration for a series exploring figures in positions of authority came some time ago, but the dire headlines earlier this year compelled me to examine again the complicated relationship between peacekeepers and their communities. In Solemnity a man in uniform stands with head bowed, the strain of his burdens evident in his attitude. The physical surface is likewise animated with conflicting elements, balancing mechanical and organic forms, intentional and serendipitous marks, warm and cool tones, texture disrupting the usually smooth depths. The enveloping darkness is a rich tangle of layers and elements, some emerging and others veiled, entreating the viewer to engage further and contemplate what lies beneath the semblance of a uniform exterior.
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