Image Alt

Bestiary / Dog and Pony Show

I will try to locate a painting study i did, one of my first paintings from mid 1980’s. It was of a twisted horse, looking distorted and screeching.

Assembled here are images of dogs, horses and a few other beasts that have been morphed and adapted over the years to express different aspects of feeling and understanding.


(The images date from 1993 to near present.)

Yuuko's Cat, oil on linen, 16 x 20, 2000.

“With Painting subject matter can be simple or complex. Images are not rote or predictable, but inspired by life’s unfolding. One can have a quiet night in the studio as the world somewhere else falls apart. Or one can be falling apart within while the world seems to march on without you” – MA, June 2020.

Some painting come from a gut feeling. Others come from responding. These ‘beastly’ images were drawn and painted just before and just after 9-11. ‘Double Dragon’ was drawn before 9-11. I remember walking over the Brooklyn Bridge during a visit to NYC in the spring of 2001 and feeling something wasn’t right. ‘Ick ach uck’ is me expressing trying to figure things out, post 9-11, to understand, and realized i was too overwhelmed to cohesively explain to others all the information coming. Hence the weird hills of a dessert and mountainous landscape, almost alien…

‘My little God, is my desire for a unifying force (such as the innocent, a little guru, a saviour, intelligence, empathy) to tame all the divisiveness and beastly actions of mankind.

‘Aback’ was to capture the shock of tragedy. The white bird maybe Bin laden, and the not shocked character on the beast almost expecting the attack ‘the west’. Not sure exactly, but felt right at the time.- MA 2020

Other animal imagery…

The ‘Hope and Salvation’ image: Money in the bank is what our culture tells us is salvation. On the coin are the words ‘In God we Trust’.

Painting in progress – Dog Eat Dog
Four progress photos of the painting 'Dog Eat Dog', oil on linen, 40 x 48 inches, 2012.
Jack, the model at rest, 2019.