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Lot 20 – Helen Kerrdige – Artist

Acrylic on canvas

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Description

Painting: The Devil is in the Detail, 2024

Media: Acrylic on canvas

Dimensions: 1015 x 1525mm

The symbolic language of still life in art history can lead to many layers of meaning within a work. Here I have delved into this history to imbue allegory beyond the literal.

The table is overflowing with fresh produce, a Kereru wrestles with a blackbird over a crab taken from a plate as a crayfish attempts to escape the melee. The Blackbird with his alluring song and dark plumage is the symbol of the devil and he is seducing the Kereru (the New Zealander) with temptations of the flesh. Nothing is as it literally seems; food can work on a general level symbolising an abundance of riches, or on a specific level where each piece has its own distinct meaning. The fig is fertility but also can be used in place of the apple in the Garden of Eden, the fruit of temptation and sin. Peaches have been synonymous with more intimate regions of the body for centuries. Grapes are associated with Dionysius/Bacchus and debauched behaviour, the lemon the bitterness of life.

There are many signs that I have placed within this still life that allude to desire but ultimately I want it to be viewed as a playful excuse for my imagination to run wild.

Painting: The Devil is in the Detail, 2024

Media: Acrylic on canvas

Dimensions: 1015 x 1525mm

The symbolic language of still life in art history can lead to many layers of meaning within a work. Here I have delved into this history to imbue allegory beyond the literal.

The table is overflowing with fresh produce, a Kereru wrestles with a blackbird over a crab taken from a plate as a crayfish attempts to escape the melee. The Blackbird with his alluring song and dark plumage is the symbol of the devil and he is seducing the Kereru (the New Zealander) with temptations of the flesh. Nothing is as it literally seems; food can work on a general level symbolising an abundance of riches, or on a specific level where each piece has its own distinct meaning. The fig is fertility but also can be used in place of the apple in the Garden of Eden, the fruit of temptation and sin. Peaches have been synonymous with more intimate regions of the body for centuries. Grapes are associated with Dionysius/Bacchus and debauched behaviour, the lemon the bitterness of life.

There are many signs that I have placed within this still life that allude to desire but ultimately I want it to be viewed as a playful excuse for my imagination to run wild.