Artwork Collection

This series was started in November 2011, and consists of thirty-six paintings that were completed over a period of two and a half years.

The paintings are large in format, mostly six feet in width, and painted in oil on canvas. War paintings are traditionally rendered in muted and muddy tones – I wanted to take a fresh approach, explosive in colour and energy.

This series is painted from a decidedly Canadian perspective and wherever possible I have tried to consider our contribution at key moments such as Vimy Ridge and the Third Battle of Ypres.

The First World War was by all accounts a trench war, so the first thing I did was….. build a trench. I needed to feel the trench, see it, and make a connection with it to try and understand what I was about to undertake. The trench is on the one hand, intimate and comforting, starkly contrasting the violence and exposure of war, and on the other hand, claustrophobic and imprisoning.

In the spring of 2013 I traveled to Belgium and France, ground zero in 1914, to conduct further research. Standing on tortured ground I felt like a soldier a hundred years removed from battle, overwhelmed and unprepared. The emotion was palpable. Inspired, I returned home and poured this emotion onto the canvas.