“What the hell are we supposed to do now?!” I asked, panicked and confused. A genuine question – what should a hiker do when posed with such a predicament? Having no experience, I genuinely didn’t know. The worried glances of my friends did nothing to calm me. They knew this was bad.
“Get the hell off the mountain,” one of them said, and we immediately began our frantic, stumbling descent, across boulders now slippery from the melting hail.
“Take care,” someone said, “you don’t want to break an ankle up here, cos then we’ll be in real trouble”.
Real trouble? What the hell was this if not real trouble? As the adrenaline started flowing The happy spell cast by the first half of the day was broken and smashed, and I was dragged writhing, to the the dark side of my brain.
This is an exceprt from a guest post I did recently for mental health blog Seeds in the Wasteland which can be found here.
Sometimes, and this is rare, I stumble across an image that begs to be reproduced in a way that arrived fully formed in my mind. Me being me, there was always going to be an element of randomness. I knew that I wanted some drips in the background, but you just can’t control those luscious drips, and I wouldn’t want to either. This took only a few hours to make, it just leaped out of my subconscious. So in many senses, this one made itself. The human brain is just another stochastic system – at the mercy of the environment, manacled to its memorial imprints – and attributing too much (and some would argue any) credit to volition and predetermined wisdom or insight is post-rational hubris. The painting is a product of its environment. Since the source material is a very old photo, there is a irresistible juxtaposition involved too.
Ordinary by Alex Loveless (2018). Acrylic on Canvas. 60cm x 90cm.
This piece could be considered a pendant to another of my works “The Will of the People”. They both features ladies from old horror/sci-fi films and explore themes of enslavement, brain-washing, paranoia and conformity. Both are very much a product of, and a comment upon the confusing, bleak times we find ourselves in.
The Seeds of Division by Alex Loveless (2018). Acrylic on Canvas. 24in x 30in.
Many of my paintings have a implicit theme or meaning, some more obvious than others. I don’t think good art has to mean anything, but as I tend to have many things to say, painting is one way to get these thoughts, opinions and ideas out there, even if only obliquely. If a painting like this elicits more than aesthetic judgement, if it makes people feel more, positively or negatively, then I consider that a win.
The Will of the People by Alex Loveless (2018). Acrylic on Canvas. 60cm x 90cm.