Left: Studio in The Whisky Bond, 2014
'Eggs' was made for 'The Real Face of Robert Burns', The Robert Burns Museum, Alloway in February 2015.
'Roses' was made for 'Burns Unbroke', Summerhall, Edinburgh in January 2018.
'Eggs' is a musing on Burns' contested and controversial erotic poems or bawdy verse (The Merry Muses of Caledonia); the power and choices that are part of portraying flattering or degrading faces of a historical character, and a reflection on sex, desire and gender. The face is a mix of Robert Burns' and the artist's.
'Roses' takes as its starting point Burns' famous 'My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose' poem, to explore cliche, romanticism, emotion, kitsch, the objectification of the love object; and the challenges of creating a piece of art (writing or painting) to express adoration.
'Eggs', oil on canvas, 1m x 1m then resized, 80cm x 60cm, 2015
'Roses', oil on canvas, 80cm x 80cm, 2018
Two paintings commissioned for two exhibitions exploring Robert Burns' life, work
and legacy in contemporary art