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I wanted to make a series of large figures that act as containers for layers of drawing, colour and texture; vessels that hold anatomical landscapes within.

I am intrigued by archaeology and the layers which record the process of time unfolding, and wanted to convey the sense that the figures have been lying for a long while out in the elements, and have acquired a patina of age.

 The strata of each work are constructed from layers of charcoal, oil paint and pencil. The figures are eroded through burning, scratching and gouging: acts of destruction that I use to reveal, rather than eliminate, past layers. The cycle of addition and subtraction continues until the final form is revealed.

I begin with drawings made directly from the model, and fill these containers with a personal system of anatomical notations that represent elements such as ribs, sternum and collarbones. These structures are overlaid with marks drawn from flow diagrams, glacial maps, x-rays and MRI scans – information which becomes absorbed into the dense mass of the figure. This material which may partly or even wholly disappear informs the next part of the process.

My work is about time and process and history. In these works, I hope to invoke the sensation of being unearthed, being part of the earth: the forms come to resemble the geography and geology of the land.

Works in the series