Conversations in the Landscape, 2019
How is it that characters & conversations have demarcated my landscapes since I first started walked alone? What is it that can unexpectedly, and inextricably connect us to a particular place at a particular moment so acutely? Conversations in the Landscape identifies some such junctures. Place, histories and connection all jostle here, time and conventions warp, the physical and the human meld. Each drawing within the series references a geographical location and date that are identified with gold gilded text.
A pivotal impetus for both this work and Conversations with Kings was seeing the unforgettable, sculpted C13th heads of the Kings of Judah in the Musée de Cluny in Paris in 2015; a magnificent and monumental collection of damaged, often fragmented sculpted heads carved in limestone. Their history is extraordinary and dramatic: for centuries as heads of full length figures adorning the main façade of Notre Dame, their violent desecration, their burial and eventual rediscovery. Most epic however, is the power and intensity that these heads retain, even as fragments of their former selves. Of the original twenty eight sculpted heads, twenty-one have been found, the other seven remain lost. Conversations in the Landscape also comprises 28 heads as a nod of respect to Musée de Cluny’s outstanding collection.
By bizarre coincidence the completion of Conversations in the Landscape was made the same evening that news of the Notre Dame fire had started. The final gilding complete, I put down my tools, turned on the radio and heard the awful news.