I am moved by the open gaze of animals and children and their instinctive ways of seeing and being. Their eyes express a trust that may either be respected or ignored, but at the very least have its fragility tested. I am interested in the moment before the face tips over into sadness and I hope to challenge the viewer into thinking about the importance of protecting innocence and vulnerability in all its forms.
Recently I have been working with flowers and plants and am finding the same “facial” qualities in subjects such as leaves, seed heads and flower heads. I have just finished “Maple Leaves Autumn”: I was moved by so many leaves lying on the ground, beautiful, but beginning to decay and die, their life sadly over.
The open gaze of animals and children reflects the vitality, openness and integrity of an instinctive way of being. As an onlooker, I think about my connection to those qualities, what has been lost or set aside and what I can learn from them.