This painting explores nurture and growth. The mother-child relationship, whether it is an exploration of what I hope to experience in my adulthood or my experience in the womb is not clear, but notions of nurture, growth and development run through the work.
The woman in the painting is a contradiction in herself – she is pregnant and yet appears to be skinny and emaciated. She is also a-racial. One cannot tell that she is white or black. She could be both.
The window is suggestive on captivity. The woman is inside a confinement, framed by the window. The child is inside the woman – framed by her body. The work hints cycle and continuation.
Pregnancy is a short lived experience. It is not permanent. Another interesting aspect to the painting is that the woman is captured in her pregnancy and therefore will remain pregnant for eternity. The child will never be released from the safety of the womb. So although the work insinuates continuity is freeze-frames it.
Technically this work marked huge development for me. My understanding of light and shadow, human anatomy and working in three dimensions, incorporating the lace and raffia which I used for the hair and shorts. Working in monochrome was also a new technique and the importance of using browns, greens and yellows over and above the obvious back and white.