The Paperworks are collections of hundreds of original individual ink drawings pasted one on top of the other and covering entire surfaces from edge to edge. The drawings are done with felt tip pen or brush on paper in black ink and then cut out and pasted with wallpaper paste creating a seamless surface of images – portraits, landscapes, still lives, and other art historical references.
My work has mostly involved painting and drawing and out of these the Paperwork has evolved. They are a way of making a lot of images culminating in one very large work without taking up too much space and without a lot of material. I think of this work as a storage system for all the art that I would like to make, or want to look at, or that has stuck in my mind. I always feel like there is never enough, and I have to make just a few more. It’s the drive that makes an artist keep on producing.
The latest Paperworks, compared to the earlier ones, have become more dense and the amount of material is more layered, also, the references are a bit more specific. Earlier works from this series had more imaginary imagery, and the latest ones have more references to other artworks and studied images.
Recurring themes are art historical genres and the history of representation, as well as the way that we accumulate images, gestures and styles to tell our stories in a culture already saturated with images.
Things that I’m interested in looking at are paintings of all sorts, but mostly figurative, classical Greek sculptures, reclining nudes, images of women. Studies of works by the old masters and contemporary artists are found among the doodles with recognisable references, from Renaissance art to abstract paintings, portraits, disasters from the newspaper and all the paintings that were once popular that now stack up under the stairs.
The really good reference images are easy to draw. My jotting is a test of sorts. If it translates well in a quick sketch, then I think that it has got more chance of being an image that stands the test. The quick ink drawings are each an examination of an idea, gesture or composition, intensely scrutinized if for only a minute or two.