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                         Relief Paintings (Wall Assemblages) 1992 to1994

                                               The Animal Ark Series                                                                                                                                                                                 
                                                             1992 to 1994 Text By Eve Damie

Like the Surrealists and Dadaists, I am concerned with the otherworldly, the fantastic, the comical and with inventing new realities. These new realities are profoundly linked to a 20th century urban environment.

My ongoing series of relief paintings*, the Animal Ark Series, is reminiscent of fetish totems, relics, tribal cult objects, mythological deities and robot - like beings. Its primitive elements are framed within a post-modern sensibility. Each painting is a microcosm of the cycle of the universe - birth, life, death and rebirth - with animals recurring as the paramount motif within this altered universe.

The paintings consist of constructed surfaces shaped into stylized and abstract figures. To these figures, I attach found objects, which can be seen as orphan nomads rescued from oblivion and given a new purpose in life. Transformed by paint, the objects take on different meanings as they are integrated into new contexts. They become painted symbols that convey a primitive - modern magical sentiment. Using found objects allows me to borrow specific parts of my environment in order to evoke its history and transcend its original destiny.

Toy plastic animals - both prehistoric and living - play a vital role in many of the relief paintings, defining the central theme of this series. Through the use of animal symbolism, I invent, uncover and rediscover the lost myths that live in the unconscious mind. The rich and complex iconography in these paintings creates a mythological narrative that can be read in whole or in parts.

The toy animals and other found objects are adorned with brilliant, iridescent and metallic colours that create a gem - like, sacred quality. The animals are transformed into vital energy forces and magical spirits, demanding respect from the viewer. By portraying animals in such a light, my intention is to sensitize others to the divine nature of animals and explore the human condition through animal symbolism.

The Animal Ark Series is a call for the survival of the animal world. It is about transformation, renewal and hope in a chaotic and fragmented world.

*(Relief Paintings are acrylic painted  (2-dimensional) assemblages that hang on the wall)