Burden

Burden

‘Burden’, 48″ X 60″, oil on canvas, 1994.

I remember it well, so long ago now, at a typical physical art show, you can see the painting in person. The title is on the wall, sometimes. A friend whispered in my ear, “just number them”. I see now the wisdom in that statement. You shouldn’t need anything really. The presence of the physical painting should make you hear it without me saying anything. If I have done it correctly.

Am I a burden to you? Or are you a burden on me?

Self Pity

‘Self Pity’, 42″ X 42″, oil on canvas, 1995. This painting is lost in space somewhere. These are such a stark contrast to the Domesticated works where you could see I was no longer interested in impressing you with my painterly skills. In the distant past, all you would see is the painting and the title. Even the title I gave it should be irrelevant, your see what you see.

This is the original attempt to paint this emotional outburst. It is oils on wood. I gave this piece to a friend in 1987 or something like that. I always felt my head/brain were being squashed into odd shapes, still do, the medication just helps me sleep on a regular basis. The mania remains.

Reclining on the Wall

To show the size of the painting compared to an ordinary batchelor apartments walls.

‘Reclining/Neurotica II’, 60″ X 120″, oil on canvas, 1988.

The second painting in the attempt to create a style for myself to study the effects of colour and form on the audience, or gallery patrons is more acurate. I am always interested in what the public are doing when they look at the piece, and they don’t know I am the painter, the show is when I can watch you. The idea is that people could be affected by colour and form, even if they don’t know what they are looking at. They physically bend and twist their bodies without realizing it, trying to give the image a place in their minds. Its quite hilarious. And then its too late, the artist is in now, the image moves at the speed of light, you can’t unsee this. What information is in the image?

As you can see I have to stand in the annex to my greenhouses in order to get a picture at all. There are two this size which did make an appearance in the public eye. At a small gallery in the West, and at a business conference. That was fun. This piece was standing vertically beside Neurotica One, it made a ten foot by ten foot wall of flesh. They were both painted at one of those rare moments in my life when I actually loved one of you.

‘Neurotica One’, another painting taken by beings from a different dimension, or reality, as in anyone with a house and a wall large enough to show this painting. The photo of Neurotica One, on the right, is from my sign shop in the West where it was created. Standing beside each other they were a spectacle.

I have just recently pulled this out from my art cave to unroll it and relieve the canvas a little. It should really be hung again in a frame to pull tighter than this. But hanging it for a few days and pinning it down will do for now. Its still really flexible, no cracks at all. It was framed and stretched originally by a professional, me, so its a bargain at $35.000.00 US.

‘Neurotica #2/ Reclining’, 60″ X 120″, oil on canvas, 1988.$35,000.00 US.

My second book

This is the cover I designed for the book. I made these through Amazon's books and Kindle.

This link will take you to the e-book on Amazon.

A fellow painter of large pieces said to me I should make a record of some kind, a gathering of little images and ideas created from the large ones. Maybe stitched or glued together.

As I have many large paintings, and a great deal of other work, the idea of having something small I could hold in my hand was very enticing. As much for others as it was for me to see what I got up to from my death bed.

Bedlam : The Art of Graham Houston

Click the cover for a preview of the book.

 From famine and war to murder and suicide I have always sought ways which the visual artist could attract the viewer, hold their attention for long enough to see what’s in front of them and prompt a discussion. It’s the temptation of brightly coloured imagery used to create horrifying ideas, human ideas.

Thanks for the help in making more art. Donate whatever you like, for art supplies or coffee.

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Below is the link to amazon for the hardcover.

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Hunger II

‘Hunger II’, 36″ X 60″,oil on canvas, 1993.

The scale is always a problem. Works like this and larger really need wealthy people with a house and walls big enough to look somewhat balanced. And they need to be this size to have the effect I want. A large field of pthalo blue can be quite chilling physically when you stand in front of this. Perhaps its just the idea of a very large starving child.

Its the second of along series of images I thought of as icons to represent the conditions of our times. This piece has only been seen at Bedlam Gallery in 1994. It is somewhat difficult to find a gallery that will show these at all.

If you read this, I am pretty sure I was not accepted by the Cambridge Library Gallery show about poverty, a bit to loud and direct for them.

These are in the red room. Both of these paintings sold and went to a very big home with 3 others larger. It was great fun hanging them for the customer. I absolutely love seeing my work hanging, well, anywhere.

The Entropy Wall

The ever mutating studio wall. I’ve felt for a while now that the public does not get a good idea of the artwork from a digital or computer screen of some kind. That wall is not electric.

The painting is called ‘The Last Supper’, 1996, you can probably see why. That’s Judas hanging in the corner, I had to find a way to fit that in with the rest of the nonsense, there is a lot of it in this painting. There is an H- bomb dropping from the sky and the writing on the wall says…

And the Lord spake unto his disciples,

LOOK AT THIS MESS,

and verily he said, I can’t leave you guys alone for one minute,

and then he let them have it, saying unto them,

‘This is it! This is the last time I do anything for you lot of ….

Its been seen in public twice now, with a friendly audience only, a pop up type show in the anthropology lunch room, maybe it was independent studies. And a little out of the way cafe where I had to carry it on the bus to deliver it, I was so determined to poke somebody in the eye with it. Its quite heavy, 48″ X 32″ X 0.5″ plywood and 20 lbs or so of paint.

Tri Polar

Tearing oneself apart from the inside is a difficult concept to portray visually.

This was the third painting I made in that. I was feeling better physically, enough so to stretch a large canvas. In the under painting of acrylic gesso mixed with plaster and semen, I painted an equation, with my blood. In essence it describes the population of the earth at the time I painted this, divided by the claimed wealth of all nations, which then equals the amount you are entitled to. No questions, no legal defence allowed. You are all way over budget. Time to stop. I followed the equation with an acrylic under painting of a nuclear explosion. Which was followed by the self portrait ripping my face off.

Oil on canvas, 42" X 42". 2005.
‘Tri-Polar’, 42″ X 42″, oil on canvas.

I called it tri-polar because I did not agree with my psychiatrist. All you have is on or off, I have an in between which allows me to divert the rage in us all into art. Do you? I think that is how art happens.

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