Hunter II (oil on canvas 91 x 60cm)
The subject in this piece appears at first glance to be a stoic tribal or ancient warrior, protected by a battered and brightly adorned armoured mask and with a trophy fur making him reminiscent of a Roman Centurion. The dramatic composition and costuming are effectively subverted however by the warrior’s choice of totem for his headdress. Where we might expect to see a wolf or lion’s head, we see a rubber duck instead.
This device attempts to show the viewer that the traditionally masculine adornments/ behaviors we might accept culturally may more often than not be superficial and even foolish if we allowed ourselves to view them from a truly objective vantage.
Hunter (oil on canvas 91 x 60cm)
Following the theme in my work of examining cultural archetypal images, this piece’s subject is outwardly representative of the ‘warrior’.
Representing a hunter, warrior or god of war, this subject is draped in the finery of his conquests, animal furs and skulls are testament to this subject’s prowess.
This is betrayed however by the expression on the subject’s face. He is clearly appalled with the trophies he sees around him, his face contorted, his hand gripping the spear intensely as he teeters on the edge of tears.
This again seems to be counteracted by the blue face totem decorating the ram’s skull headdress. The grin here could be seen as the victims of the hunter being given a small justice in his suffering, or as the face that the hunter himself puts on, to sit over and disguise his anguish.
This representation of the warrior could be seen then as more an examination of the nature of masculinity, common across many cultures. While the traditional superficial appearance of the masculine is often one of unassailable strength and might, what lies beneath is only human, with all its flaws and anxieties.