All images copyright Stephen Solomons. (C) 2005 - 2012.
Site by Weblight Studio (Australia)
The Grim City series were the sign of an important move back to images with deep symbolic power. All of these images can be read on many levels from the Quabbalist, the Wiccan through to Christian, Asian pagans and academic and personal
While the style of ink is more stark and simple than the earlier and later works this was a landmark for me as they represent the first baby steps back into drawing after an illness that kept me down for years. In the time these works were done I was told I was close to death. I had numerous heart attacks and was eventually stabilised by the urgent addition of the most amazing technology. Little spirals of metal that open the clogged arteries and allow blood to flow again.
Blood flowing back through my brain started the creative processes again and these were the first attempts to rediscover a language of symbols I have spent most of my life investigating. A part of this work is about your discovery, The images do not come with defined meanings as I feel that the inner sight of the artist may be attached to some greater part of ourselves that does not easily meet the physically world. It speaks but does not explain itself to the artist.
These are a few images from series one. A calendar was made of them at Zazzle in the United States. They are almost naive in their simplicity and were a battle against illness the whole time.
The whole city bathes in a lake of black liquid. Is it oil? Is it psychological desperation? Is it the blackness in which float our nightmares?
The post-industrial presence of the great faceless buildings press against reality behind everything. All the images have these elements in common. Is the image about pain, ecstacy, or the pulsing life behind the universe?
Perhaps all this is a bit too art school and self conscious for you. My mind and perhaps my soul have a need to speak through some medium.
This came out of the Easter period in 2011. The beast looks angry or determined and his flesh is about the crucifix. The Chinese on the hoarding in the background (I think) says something like "may the gods protect this building.
Did Wabbit grow around the wooden frame? Was he torn by a terrible attack that smashed the cross into his body?
This beast carries the mighty heart held beating in the breast of the smallest creature.
The Zen of Nature:
What would that mean? I think this one can be left without comment although the Chinese caligraphy may be the same as the title of the picture.
Other works have come into being since this series was finished and before as well. They are all more complex and the meanings are embedded into the image with a lot more subtlety. These are what they are and I have discover a lot more people enjoy them than I expected!