A History Painting
Arcades are houses or passages having no outside – like the dream.
Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project.
The photographic record of abandoned interiors, provided by aid workers on NGO rescue ships, from organisations such as SOS Mediterranean, was the starting point for both series of paintings.
The paintings in The Dream House series are based on these real yet dream-like interiors. Cursorily repaired with odd pieces of timber and all masked over with a unifying layer of bright blue paint, they feel as if they hold within them the very breath of every soul who has taken that hazardous journey. The traces are scattered all around, of the suffocating existence in the ship’s hold: discarded clothes, water bottles, and the merging detritus of food packaging, toiletries etc.