Trial by Ordeal

I took, as inspiration for this painting,the the medieval ducking stool and applied it to a modern-day scenario by taking head and shoulder photographs of myself, underwater, in a bath. I wanted a face up position, so the 21st century fluorescent lighting would reflect on my face through chlorinated water. Much time was spent painting bubbles and skin discolouration – the water was deliberately quite cold. The final piece was covered in transparent cellophane – the connotation being the serious modern environmental problem of ‘being drowned by plastic’, as, indeed, some wildlife is.

Photograph 1
Photograph 1

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Photograph 2
Photograph 2

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Photograph 4
Photograph 4

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Photograph 1
Photograph 1

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Drowned in Plastic (1)

40.5 cm x 30.5 cm

Oil on Canvas with cellophane overlay

Drowned in Plastic (2)

40.5 cm x 30.5 cm

Oil on Canvas with cellophane overlay

Drowned in Plastic (3)

40.5 cm x 30.5 cm

Oil on Canvas with cellophane overlay

I further went on to use different colours of cellophane to alter the viewer's experience. The use of colour proved exciting, as the block of colour blocked-out crucial parts of the face whilst also exposing others. 

Drowned in Plastic (4)

40.5 cm x 30.5 cm

Oil on Canvas with cellophane overlay

Drowned in Plastic (5)

40.5 cm x 30.5 cm

Oil on Canvas with cellophane overlay