• Proposal for environmental contemporary art: Tree of Life

    contemporary art environment tree of life

    Environmental contemporary art proposal: Tree of Life

    Proposal for a mural. Image drawn: 2008

    A proposal for a mural on a gallery wall based on a drawing of the Tree of Life that I created in 2008 as a pen and ink drawing.

    The concept reflects my interest in environmental issues. I drew my first environmental images in the early 1970s.

    The concept behind the image is that the Tree of Life, or perhaps more specifically the Tree of Evolution, has at the top of its highest branch a human being, signifying that within this concept the human being is the highest or most evolved form of life on the planet.

    The concept is twisted however by the fact that in the image the human being, due to his elevated vantage point, can destroy the rest of life on earth as a direct result of his evolutionary position, with his highly evolved intelligence making him capable of designing and manufacturing guns). The Tree of Life becomes the Tree of Death.

  • Proposal for a mural – semi-abstract wall figures

    contemporary art mural

    Mural (proposal).

    Photomontage. December 2023

    A proposal for a mural applied directly to an art gallery wall.

    I’ve been experimenting with subjects that are suitable for murals on gallery walls for several years.

    The proposed mural is of a group of semiabstract figures with linked hands. The anatomy of the figures is ambiguous. Are the circular objects at the top of the figures their heads, or are those some form of decoration? Are the large white circles eyes, and are the various indentations mouths?

  • Fleeing environmental degradation – migration as a result of environmental collapse

    contemporary environmental art migration

    Fleeing environmental disaster. Mural (proposal).

    Photomontage. December 2023

    This proposed mural is based on a cartoon about fleeing environmental catastrophe that I drew in about 1991.

    The image depicts a Western family fleeing a ravaged land that is piled with the detritus of the consumer society. The family is fleeing in a builder’s skip or dumpster, which ironically is a symbol of consumerism in that skips can often be seen outside houses here in the UK while the owners of the houses have new kitchens installed to replace their perfectly good old kitchens. There are several skips in my street as I write this.

    When I first drew the cartoon about thirty years ago the concept of fleeing environmental disaster by boat was a novel idea with little or no link to actual events in the real world. The journey in the cartoon was symbolic. Now in the 2020s everything has changed, with boats constantly crossing the Mediterranean Sea and the English Channel carrying migrants from countries that are affected by climate change and other environmental and social pressures.

    It’s interesting that if the mural depicted in this photograph was a cartoon in a magazine it would be looked at for a couple of seconds at most and then passed over. Enlarged onto a gallery wall the image may attract attention for noticeably longer and would magically attain a higher status.

    I’ve drawn environmental cartoons since the 1970s. My environmental cartoons have been published widely, including in publications such as the Guardian newspaper and the Critic magazine. A book of my environmental cartoons, When Humans Roamed the Earth, was published by WWF/Earthscan in 1992.

  • Emergent Patterns of Complexity – proposal for wall mural

    contemporary optical effect art

    Emergent Patterns of Complexity (proposal).

    Artist’s impression/photomontage. 2014.

    An artist’s impression of one of my Emergent Pattern artworks as it would appear displayed on an art gallery wall.
    The work is composed of two identical grids of black lines that are one above the other and that are at an angle to each other. Where the lines on the two grids cross each other the black lines cancel out and are replaced by white. The result is that the overlapping grids create complex emergent patterns.

    The generation of these patterns is in some ways analogous to the generation of Moiré patterns or fringes. They are much more complex than Moiré patterns however, as Moiré patterns are created by the simple overlaying of lines without the additional operation of modifying the areas where they overlap.

    The artwork is inspired by my fascination with optics and optical effects and my interest in both art and science.

  • A proposal for a projection of Expansion II

    A proposal for a projection of the light work Expansion II (proposal/visualisation).

    Video    4m 53s.    2023

    A projection of the work Expansion II.

    An impression of what the work Expansion II would look like projected onto a wall of the National Theatre in London.

  • Ants on an art gallery wall. Proposal

    Note: this work has coincidental similarities to House Taken by Rafael Gomezbarros.

    My concept predates that of Gomezbarros, mine being originally conceived in the 1990s to accompany an article in the Guardian newspaper, while Gomezbarros’s work was created in the 2000’s (as far as I can tell).

    Contemporary art and science - ants and insects as a superorganism

    A proposal for an artwork about ants as a super organism

    Artist’s impression for a gallery installation. January 2020. Based on a work from 1990

    A proposal or concept for an artwork showing ants crawling across an art gallery wall, with the ants grouping together and coalescing into the form of a single gigantic ant.
    The artwork depicts the concept of the superorganism, in which multiple individual organisms of the same species (in this case ants) interact by a process of synergy to give rise to a collective body that can operate in ways that the individuals can’t. The individual organisms within the superorganism usually display a degree of division of labour or specialisatoin of function, meaning that the individual organisms can’t survive for long on their own. Human civilisation is often defined as a form of superorganism, although this isn’t strictly accurate, as humans can survive alone.

    Contemporary art and science - ants and insects as a superorganism

    The ants in the work may be two dimensional, such as in a mural, or three dimensional such as in a sculptural work.

    Contemporary art ants
  • Plastic milk bottle heads as a large wall mounted installation (visualisation).

    Contemporary environemtal installation – oversized plastic bottles

    Giant milk bottle heads

    Visualisation of wall mounted sculpture or installation. September 2018

    This visualisation is a development of my work in creating human heads from plastic milk bottles.
    The sculptural heads are vastly over-sized compared to the original plastic milk bottles.
    The size of the heads gives them an impressive air, similar to that created by, for example, Easter Island statues. The primitive markings that create the faces are reminiscent of ancient ritualistic statuary. These factors, the ancient and the impressive, give the work a tension due to the mundanity of the objects that are actually represented – discarded plastic milk bottles with fibre tip pen faces drawn on them.
    These heads are partly a comment on our throw-away consumer culture and the environmental hazard that it represents. The size of the milk bottles can be taken to represent the size of the problem of consumer waste, especially of one-use consumer waste (such as plastic milk bottles). The faces drawn on the bottles are partly a reference to the fact that it’s normal people who are generating the waste.

    The work reflects my interest in art and the environment (I created my first environmental art in the early 1970s).

  • Gallery wall mural visualisation

    Contemporary abstract art as a gallery wall mural

    Wall mural on an art gallery wall – visualisation

    A visualisation of an image applied directly to the wall of an art gallery. July 2018

    A photomontage showing what an image from my series of smoking squares would look like if applied directly to an art gallery wall as a mural.

  • Hammers – photomontage for sculpture in the environment, Cornwall

    Contemporary sculpture  in the landscape Cornwall - hammers

    Hammers: sculpture in the landscape

    Photomontage visualisation. Cornwall. June 2018

    A visualisation of a concept for a sculpture in the landscape.
    The landscape in the photograph is the Penwith peninsula in west Cornwall.
    The hammers are meant to project a sense of overbearing force, the fact that there are several of them possibly implying organised force (such as military force). Hammers, to me, have a certain anthropomorphic quality to them, suggesting a degree of human identity – a long thin body with a head at the top. The blank facelessness of the heads of the hammers in this image suggest a mindless power (I’ve done other works in which hammers have faces).

  • Visualisation of an animation on the foyer wall of an office block.

    Visualisation of artwork in the foyer of an office

    Video/photo montage. 2022

    Look at the image above for a second time after a few seconds and notice how the artwork on the wall has changed.

    It’s a visualisation of an animated artwork on the foyer wall of a large office building, with the artwork montaged onto a static image. The rotating forms within the artwork are moving slowly here so that they create an ordered, calming effect. The speed of the movement can be changed, for instance to create a faster, more dynamic feel if necessary.

    The works in my Complexity series, such as the example shown here, lend themselves very much to spacious office foyers due to the way that they work well at very large scales.

    The amount of detail that is generated in these works is very high, as can be seen in other examples here.
    The works can be displayed as static images or as very eye-catching animated images (either projected or on electronic displays).
    Any corporate art consultancy that is interested in this work – please get in touch!

    corporate art in an office foyer
    A static image of the work.