My personal struggle to express the feminine aspect of my psyche – the anima, reflects a broader cultural struggle for female recognition and equality. While this struggle for me is highly personal, it mirrors a wider cultural conflict.
Expressing my anima has evolved gradually against a very masculine past which includes military service with the SAS Regiment.
My art involves learning from women, as well speaking through them as a proxy or alter ego. This has given me a female face and allowed me to express things that would otherwise remain obscure or hidden.
My internal struggle mirrors the physical assault that some men make against women. Rather than owning their frustrations, or learning from women, some men externalise and blame.
Violence against women is physical, cultural and endemic.
For this reason, art for me is something that confronts or challenges.
It’s not simply decorative, but has something more to say. This something is largely emotional, yet can also be philosophical, political or cultural - anything that transforms the work at hand into something beyond a complement to the décor.
This is not to say art cannot be admired purely for its aesthetic appeal. But rather, the art ‘I’ like moves me to think or feel on another level. It’s entirely a subjective experience and doesn’t have to make me feel good or uplifted.
Art is ‘literally’ in the eye of the beholder.
My art is about the human condition, in particular, the feminine part of the male psyche - the ‘anima’. This subject cuts to the heart of masculine identity and some of the changes experienced by men in today’s shifting society.
My work is also inspired by the Gothic genre which began with the industrial revolution. It portrays the shadow side of humanity which forms a necessary balance in becoming a whole person.
In both cases, my art deals with the dual nature of existence - male and female, light and shadow.