I am working with wax and damar resin, which is generally called encaustic. I am fascinated by this medium and have wanted to explore it since I first saw the images that were used on the coffins of ancient Egypt. The portraits are very realistic and gutsy, the layers are able to be seen, and are almost 3 dimensional.
Then I discovered the work of Jenny Sages in the Archibald and realised that there was another way of using this combination of materials. Another process to be researched and explored. Jasper Johns also used encaustic on a different matrix.
I think this media is more flexible than just oils, and I like the reference to objects such as insect life being caught in resin and setting to become amber. So the first series of works I did using this media was based on Cicadas, insects that are very prolific in summer.
The processes involved included sealing the support so that wax mixture would not keep being absorbed by support. Then a mixture of painterly strokes, scratching and image transfer on the series of transparent layers. Each layer of wax mixture needing to be fused by gently heating and also before the application of a new layer of medium.
The themes, ideas and concerns I consider are the interaction between nature and humans. There could be a storyline but this may be hidden.
Sometimes the issue of gender is addressed, more often than not involving the motif or symbolic figurine of the goddess. This spills over into my exploration of archaeological finds concerning votive figurines across the ages, which I have sculpted from clay and found objects as well as creating mixed media images.
By cross referencing my sculpture, drawings of natural objects and interpreting them into mark making in encaustic, I plan to have a body of work by the end of the year that reflects my exploration of man, his spiritual journey and relationship to his environment over the ages.
I have been influenced by the work of Mimo Paladino, George Baldessin, Antony Gormley , Antoni Tapies, Hannah Hoch, Bruno Bartoccini and Alberto Burri.