Australian, born 1957; lives and works in Melbourne
Puff (Chrysalis) 2021
oil on linen
Courtesy of the artist and Charles Nodrum Gallery, Melbourne
Puff (Chrysalis) is from a series that takes a ‘puffer’ jacket I wore on my daily walk throughout the wintry months of the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown as a central motif.
This painting seeks to render strange this ubiquitous, familiar and everyday garment—in its larger than life scale and back-to-front orientation. Seemingly suspended from the top of the canvas in a luminous, lemon void, this image plays with the ambiguities of embodiment and representation through the paradoxes of visual perception.
Biologically, the chrysalis is a hardened shell, protective of the inactive stage of the development between larva and adult butterfly. In this work the ‘empty’ garment hints at metamorphosis and flux—the emergence from the cocoon—much like I felt as I stepped out of isolation and lockdown into daylight and liberty wearing my puff coat.