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Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. Simonides

Iain Whittaker

"I have a fondness for ludicrous yet convincing images with unexpected undertows, and placing the unfamiliar with the familiar in what people call “making strange of things”. Paintings that are confrontational yet with empathetic groundings and a metaphorically autobiographical bent. Not objects for passive consumption that fit comfortably within administrated culture, but lucid psychological spaces formed from an interplay between art and life. Images that feel seductively 'other' and steeped in hallucinatory detail from which the viewer can leap into an intangible, perhaps unexpected, realm of feeling.

Ideas for paintings may come fast, but they often lurk around for years as tenuous mind visualisations before they coalesce into forms offering substance and depth. Surrounded by research, photographic images, drawings, vague compositional scribbles, found objects and props, a picture often begins with a focus point like a face, and a delight in creating small worlds amid the large. I sometimes feel like Dr Frankenstein, stitching up body parts that can only come alive with the electricity of intense detailing. These images are hardly ever formed all at once or found in a fitting sequence. Always digging around for something else, I don't enjoy painting where everything is measured or preordained and conceptually understood from the start."

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