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The Art of John Gray

Figures Turning

Please click on any of the thumbnail paintings to view that painting, as a larger size, or the whole series of larger sized paintings.

Figures Turning

This series explores John's obsession with the human condition and his search to find an expression for the fear and vulnerability of existence. Much of the disquieting force of these paintings come from the conflict of trying to depict movement in a static medium. This combined with figures struggling in water forms the subject of most of these paintings . Paintings like "If All Else Fails" epitomise the essence of this series as the figures travel through "Fall", "Emergence" and "Hope". Sometimes a lone figure in a room with only a painting and rug as furnishing, turns dancing like a combination of a whirling Dervish and the headbangers of Status Quo (both in their way trying to achieve enlightenment). The triptych "Francis and Me" done around the time of the death of Francis Bacon, is a homage to the painter and his continuing influence on John's work. Bacon's ability to make raw painting from emotional experience, and the idea that painting was a suitable receptacle for obsessive philosophical observations on the human condition raised him to heroic status in John's eyes. The figure turning series and the subsequent development of these into his current work shows clearly his debt to Bacon.


Figure Turning

Figure looking
at the Painting

Francis & Me

If all else Fails


Piper at the
Gates of Dawn