There’s a great end of year exhibition of local arts opening this Friday at Stur Gallery + Store. After my show in October, I really wanted to present work that shows the territory I’m heading in and I’ve been playing around with this idea that the toys we had as kids are a kind of talisman, like a little saint that we held dear and prayed to.
I also liked the halos that are on saint’s heads in Renaissance paintings, so these works are a little bit of a hybrid of those things. These ones are quite small compared to the previous works but I wanted to have some simple versions that I could imagine would go on a nun’s wall above her bed.
These are all magical things for me as a child; a girl’s dolly, a Space Hopper, my panda teddy bear and the Steve Austin Six Million Dollar Man Action Figure with the bionic eye.
I thought the baby doll was a bit too cutesy, so I gave her some prison tattoos; the teardrop tattoo and five dots tattoo. Both those tatts have some really weird history behind them, check them out if you have time.
Here’s a little peek at Saint Steve in the making:
I’d love to hear about your childhood toy, whether you still have it and what it meant to you. Hit me up in the comments below.