When I saw the Grand Canyon it took my breath away. Like David Hockney I wanted to capture its grandeur by making a montage of images. I loved his 1998 painting, A Bigger Grand Canyon (Below) A set of sixty interlocking bright, acid coloured canvases. I planned to paint my own smaller version. If you look at my final painting you would never guess its American roots because it bears no resemblance to the sketch underneath. It took me 6 months trying to work out how I was going to do it.
David Hockney's 60 canvases above with a study below.
During a visit to Australia in 2000 I saw a huge number of aboriginal artworks. I found myself profoundly affected by their style, earthy tones and reference to nature. Back home I started to paint, I abandoned my plan and just got on with it and went with wherever it was going to take me. This was my first dotty picture, it's 24 canvases - painted with a tooth pick. It took a year to paint. 3 years later I see it for the first time as a whole picture. I painted each canvas in 2's only taking the meeting edges together. Luckily when it did go on the wall it worked. It was only after seeing it up and having that space of 3 years that I could face picking up a paintbrush again. Pink Sock Soda Pop was the catalyst for all my subsequent paintings.
It was influenced by a (flipped over) Paul Smith Ad!
So 9 years later it's coming down!!!
How High? This High!
How Old? - not sure...
Putting them up wasn't great either. As they were the cheapest canvas I've ever used, brought in from when I was cabin crew working back from America - they are all slightly out of shape. My kind framer tried his best to rectify this, however as no frame was the same a bit of blue tack and duck tape became it's best friend by helping to butt up or space across.
Our sitting room has 52 holes that he has filled- each needing to be drilled, filled, sanded, re filled - sanded and then again just to get the wall back to normal.
Our hallway down stairs has 25 holes.
That's just the start.