William Mora Galleries

Stephen Eastaugh - Travailogue IX

22 June - 16 July 2005

Ushuaia Mate
2005, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20cm cm

Longitude/Latitude (red)
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 15 x 23cm cm

Missile Nipples / 500 Short Range Ballistic Missiles
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 25 x 17cm (x 5 works) cm

Aerial Roots
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 15 x 23 cm cm

Murmansk Day Tour
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20 cm (x 9 works) cm

Bandits Huts
2003, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 5 x 15 cm (x 3 works) cm

Champ Island
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20 cm cm

Wet Season
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20 cm cm

Bedouin House of Hair 2 (Beit-Ash-Sha'ar)
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20 cm cm

Personel plans in Phnom Penh
2004, Acrylic & cotton/wool on fabric, 20 x 20 cm cm

During the past two decades I have somehow managed to travel to over 60 countries on all continents. Many places were short pit stops while others I spent some months in attempting to sink roots. Roots did not form or I was only able to produce aerial roots so a tumbleweed type of life became my mode of living. Travel became a sort of home. Home as a concept has become very fluid. This is the ninth show on the road of work made on the road. The exhibition title — TRAVAILOGUE refers to the fact that all my exhibitions are distorted travelogues. The word travel is derived from "travail" meaning a bodily or mentally laborious effort. Travelogue of course is a monologue often accompanied by images of ones journey. TRAVAILOGUE therefore plays with my travel addiction and acknowledges the unpleasant aspects of moving about the planet. I have met hundreds of uprooted people who have shown me the nasty elements of migration and dislocation. Compared to the plight of refugees my travails are rather pathetic. Gluttony for kilometres and new experiences, boredom with stability and distaste for possessions fuel my travels. Wanderlust keeps me on tour not survival. In the animal world to stray from ones home terrain is suicide but in my world the risks and dangers of strange lands are assimilated into the paintings along with the positive experiences of my self-inflicted dislocation.

The TRAVAILOGUE series began in the year 2000 somewhere between Casey station in East Antarctica and Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The primitive hand stitching that I use in some works is done to enhance the texture of the little paintings but also I like the idea of stitching a slow laborious line across the fabric to represent a complicated journey. Paul Klee stated once that drawing is taking a line for a walk. I try to take my line on a very long and tricky tour. I use assorted types of bandage material as a support for all these works. This fabric to me with its function of helping to repair the body hints at the travail of travel. I am also fond of the texture that this material offers a painter. The medical bandage reeks of travail while my imagery depicts aspects of my meandering and habitual travels. Hopes of healing damage are also wrapt up in this fabric.

Many people see art itself as a mild form of medicine but the salve of art has not removed this perpetual bout of travel sickness that has made me geographically promiscuous and climatically challenged. I now confuse the exotic with the domestic and get far too much enjoyment from packing my bags and saying farewell. . .

Stephen Eastaugh


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