"The Gaze" is a thought-provoking and evocative painting that captures the complexities of modern life. It portrays my child Leo, seated in a room that is bathed in natural light streaming through an open door. The figure, with a portable tablet, is focused intently on the screen, seemingly unaware of the beauty of the world outside.
The composition of the painting is skewed and arranged to convey a sense of tension between the natural world and technology. The open door, with hints of lush green foliage, symbolises the beauty and freedom of nature, while the tablet represents the pull of modern technology and the distractions it creates. The bag and book lying on the side table, reminiscent of a walk in the hills of the Lake District, further emphasise this contrast, suggesting that the child has chosen to disconnect from the natural world in favour of the virtual one. The use of light and colour in this piece is particularly striking.
The strong light streaming through the open door creates a sense of warmth and vitality, while the cool tones in the room contrast with this and evoke feelings of isolation and detachment. The black cat, sitting on a rug, symbolises detachment and disconnection, and its distraction by a sudden movement out of sight, suggests the pull of the unknown, the unseen.
In "The Gaze," I tried to capture the complexities of our relationship with technology and the natural world, encouraging the viewer to reflect on their own experiences and choices. The painting invites the viewer to consider the beauty of the world around us and the importance of connection, both to nature and to each other.
Oil on masonite board (Ampersand™ Gessobord™)
12 × 12 inches (30.48 × 30.48 cm)