Eve of Destruction

A hundred years ago few anywhere suspected that the most deadly war of all time was about to break out in six months time. What occupied the minds of Britons was whether women should be awarded the vote or not, the disruptive campaign the Suffragettes were carrying out and the Liberal government's heavy handed reaction... Continue Reading →

The Formal Nude

It occurred to me one afternoon in Paris what made some female nudes shocking - it depends on what they are wearing, or, on their hair. The occasion was the Felix Vallatton exhibition in January. The artist was perhaps best known for his curious conversation pieces of couples in which the title added an unsettling... Continue Reading →

Private View

In London over Christmas I paid a visit to the London Museum with my wife and 10 year old daughter and what did we run across quite unexpectedly? This, the actual placard that the so called Protein Man paraded up and down Oxford St, London for 25 years. His name was Stanley Green, a harmless... Continue Reading →

Las Vegas Sleeper

Sometimes you have to wait years before you see the results of your labours. I recently heard from architect Len Cotsovolos who purchased 4 pictures from me to decorate a project he was designing way back in 2009. He sent me a Christmas card in which therewas the link to his website  where I finally... Continue Reading →

Marat’s bath tub

On a recent visit to Paris I thought I must see Marat's original bath tub in which he was stabbed by Charlotte Corday on July 13, 1793, in the Grévin Wax Museum. The tableau, one of the oldest in the museum, purports to show the scene immediately after the stabbing. The bathtub, which is impossible... Continue Reading →

Flotsam

Back in October 2007 I set up a picture based on a painting by the French academic painter Gerome called The Judgement of Phryne. I had to shoot 5 pictures in the course of a week as a Swiss TV documentary crew were following both me and my models for a film entitled Woman Portraying... Continue Reading →

Moonshine

The location for this picture is a nymphaeum, the so called Diana's Bath in a cliff beneath the Pope's summer palace at Castel Gandolfo on the shores of Lake Albano near Rome. The ravages of time and the depredations of robbers as well as legitimate excavators have left it a dripping, mysterious ruin with wonderful acoustics. ... Continue Reading →

Sirenetta

Sirens and mermaids in English are two different creatures but one in the same in Italian. Both belong to the menagerie of mythological females who lure men to their doom. In the case of the siren it is her voice that holds the fatal power, with the mermaid her sensuality. That said the pagan mermaids... Continue Reading →

Metamorphosis

When Valeria Saporetti awoke the morning of 12 March 2013  from troubled dreams she found herself transformed......."What has happened to me?" she thought. It was no dream.* Most maritime nations from the Picts to the Chinese have mythologised the  tiny sea creature, the seahorse. The Greeks named it the hippocampo, part horse part coiled monster.... Continue Reading →

Medusa

" Nature, red in tooth and claw", these lines by Tennyson describe man's primeval fear of nature. The jellyfish has neither tooth nor claw, it is not even a fish, but it is a pretty terrifying beast all the same: all are painful stingers, many are deadly.  Alluding to the creatures' agonising tentacles as well... Continue Reading →

Rare Ribs

There is an exhibition at the British Museum,  Ice Age Art,  Arrival of the Modern Mind. The exhibits, mostly sculpture from the very dawn of art 40,000 years ago fall mainly into two groups:  realistic animals, and female figures. The former would appear to have been closely observed and carved by the hunters themselves; the... Continue Reading →

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