Pub Conversation, 1977. 80 cms H X 70 cms W. Woven tapestry, cotton warp, wool weft. Private collection. Exhibited Craft Australia Expo, Centrepoint 1983. An enthusiastic viewer described the gesticulating hand, bot. right, as shaded like a medieval tapestry. Lovely reverence for historical art by this gentleman. Probably the first feedback in my career.
Loris, 1979. 60 cms H X 60 cms W. Woven tapestry, cotton warp, wool wefts. Private collection. The loris is a South-East Asian miniature possum [please excuse any unintended inaccuracy] the size of a tea cup. It hunts at night, stealthily creeping about, strangling sleeping birds, thus its huge reflector eyes. A successful work I think, minimal line work, none gratuitous, a satisfactory balance of red/green environment.
Vale, 1979. 130 cms H X 90 cms W. Woven tapestry, cotton warp, wool, mercerised cotton wefts. The background landscape is an unreal setting, the face of the sitter also, as the portrait is of a friend’s sister who had died. I decided to to use mercerised cottons to create a degree of facial austerity, as if the human qualities had been abstracted.
Miners shower, 1979. Button assembly on stretched canvas. My first exercise in the area of button collage. The buttons are genuine art deco, from an Italian fabric shop in Surrey Hills, Sydney’s ragtrade district. The skin textures are quite intuitively constructed; in some areas pagodas of piled buttons rise above the surface. A nod to Jackson Pollock’s practice of working horizontally. Private collection.
Lotus, 1980. 50 cms H X 60 cms W. Woven tapestry, cotton warp, wool, synthetic wefts. An expression of my Buddhist practice of the time [Theravada] and yoga asanas. At different times in my career, a particular yarn has been influential, as here, the gunmetal blue of the water depth creates an interesting dialogue with the shadow on the leaf, a suggestion of multiple dimensions, realities.
Immersed, 1981. 120 cms H X 90 cms W. Woven tapestry, cotton warp, wool wefts. An action portrait of an iconically Aussie surfer, emerging from the surf. Aussie painter Jeffery Smart once said he refused to paint men smiling, as the oral cavity became a tombstone cluster. None of the gestures are uninterrupted, everything is mixed with the irridescent dance of water.