Ballarat, Victoria, Australia born 1969
Bethnal Green, Tower Hamlets, Greater London, England
Materials & Technique: paintings, screen-printed jute and linen collage Support: jute, linen
I started this piece with the image of the [Japanese] Butoh performers. I was very captivated by the image and reserved it for a long time, until I felt I had the right context to use it ... For me when I think about this image I have the sense of looking at a theatrical stage, which is framed by the perimeter of the picture. The five figures appear to advance out of the depth of the picture plane, as if they are about to emerge into real space. There is something very dramatic and exuberant about this scenario, but at the same time the performers appear to be in a trance like state. Perhaps chanting or singing, there is the suggestion of some kind of ritual or ceremony taking place. For me it is an image that simultaneously suggests action and non-action. The image is mysterious, ambiguous and steeped in a strange and charged atmosphere.
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra