Bobbywashere Art blog

Royal Academy Entry ‘Manufactured’

Posted on: October 24, 2008

Maunfactured, Acrylic on Canvas (2008)

Maunfactured, Acrylic on Canvas (2008)

Ok if you reaction is similar to my family, friends, work colleagues and the framers then you are probably thinking what the hell is going on here…Let’s just say my Gran (95) was not impressed with this painting 🙂

I better proceed and explain the journey and how I arrived at this painting me thinks!

Towards the start of the year I decided I would enter this years ‘Summer Exhibition’ at the Royal Academy in London. This is an annual international competition which is open to professional, amateur and practically anybody who wishes to submit a piece of work (at a cost of £25 per creation mind! Least I’m contributing to this countries art collection I guess). Each year in January the Academy releases a word or subject matter which artists can choose to submit work based around. There are various rules, frames, labels, transportation and so on but essentially a panel of judges select from over 11,000 entries which work is to be hung in the gallery that summer. This year’s word was ‘Man Made’. 

Large Version

Maunfactured - Zoom, Acrylic on Canvas (2008)
Maunfactured – Zoom, Acrylic on Canvas (2008)

As always I intend to describe my personal journey for each observation and in this case better explain why we have some naked skin suits here! Time to dive deeper (warning!).

You will notice from previous post on this blog I have this annoying habit of flickering in between the physical (actual) world I record and the one I interpret from. To expand on this I believe its part of my remit as a visual observer to document the under currents or the subtle movements we may or may not be aware of, or in fact heading towards.

As we all float down the ‘river of life’ (apologies for the cheese here) we are all very busy and occupied just keeping afloat, avoiding obstacles even just navigating round the unexpected bends to notice what is really happening beneath us. In keeping with this admittedly pretentious analogy theme I like to look beneath the surface and observe what I see and it tends to mean the tempo is a little faster or to translate this gibberish predict the shape of things to come further down the path.

Manufactured sketch, biro on paper (2008)

Manufactured sketch, biro on paper (2008)

What’s this got to do with the skin suits I hear you all screaming now, well I have a personal fascination with the human image throughout our art heritage and human history documentation. This influence has leaded, in particular, for me to visualise our intervention (Man Made) in our species evolution and to magnify the consequences of these actions for others to peek into.

I do accept this painting is not to every bodies taste and by the way it did not get selected for the Royal Academies Summer Exhibition, surprisingly. But I have merely painted what I saw and it was not intended to be provocative as some spectators have commented on, although I except it can come across this way.

Manufactured sketch zoom, (2008)

Manufactured sketch zoom, (2008)

I think it’s safe to say it won’t be hanging on my Grans wall anytime in the near future but keeping true to my own personal philosophy I observe then record what and how I see it. I would of coarse be interested to hear your thoughts on this admittedly bizarre creation and what your take on it is as a spectator.

Large Version

P.S. Did you notice I removed the hair from the final painting, it just didn’t look right 🙂


13 Responses to "Royal Academy Entry ‘Manufactured’"

Ok, i may be being a bit slow but you kind of lost me a little in your final explantion of the meaning of the piece. The bit I didn’t get was “visualise our intervention (Man Made) in our species evolution” which seemes like it was the key line in explaining the painting. Explain to me like I’m your gran please lol!

When I first saw this painting on your flickr I presumed it was to do with womens pursuit of tailoring their bodies to fit with in with what society was declaring to be fashionable and currently desirable. All the skin suits are female, thin, nicely breasted. So I was presuming a statment about the buyng in of an idea of bodily perfection – in particular cosmetic surgery.
Is that along the right lines?

ha ha…do you know what reading my own post back I think I lost myself on that one…better post an update when I get chance, it was Friday in my defense 🙂

Yeah you are on the right lines! Think what I was trying to say and should have said is to do with our obsession with vanity and how we have started to interfere with our own image as people going forward.

It is a vision of the future to put it another way. The message behind the painting was to show a glimpse of where we are heading with cosmetic’s and from my personal viewpoint we all don’t appear to be taking note of the speed to which this is unfolding (through life’s distractions my analogy was trying to depict) of where this will all end.

It got lost in my Friday trance, daydreaming…Note to self, don’t blog in a rush or on Friday 🙂 Thanks for the feedback Chantal always appreciate the honest feedback!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and for your kind note. I like what I find here and will check back from time to time for a look into your process and your work. I am enjoying both your descriptions and the work itself. I also like seeing the preliminary sketches and the line quality I see there.

I’ll keep posting to my blog. I also think shifting the blog focus back to my own work will allow me to get out more and see what others are doing.

This is interesting work. Keep it up!

cool- gran is happy with the second explanation! 🙂

Whoa I love it.

I think it appeals to me because I have been looking into the media’s influence on younger children and eating disorders, as part of my counselling diploma.

Your observation is great, the idea excellent and the work fine. Why did it not get selected?
How annoying! I wonder if you had done a Ron Mueck on it or perhaps a photograph adapted by computer, it may have been a bit more shocking. Your style here has a slight reminisance of Quentin Blake, (intended as a compliment, he is bloody brilliant) and I wonder if it was big enough to get “noticed”, you don’t give a size.
Great work anyway. I must read more of your posts.
PS Ref. Gran, she’ll come round one day you’ll see! She dines out on it when you aren’t there!

Hello Rick,
Yep no problems about my comment on your blog I thought your painting about male aggression was excellent and I like the diversity of your work!

Glad you like what you find on my Blog always good to get feedback from new and repeat viewers of my work.

Couple of visitors has commented how they enjoy the insight behind each work and I intend to keep this up as I paint, record new observations. I know some artist prefer to keep the process under wraps but I like to bear all so to speak, I like the spectator to know what was going on in my wondering mind.

I will stick you on my Blogroll thingy and subscribe to your RSS feed so I can view your latest creations as and when you post to your blog.

I would recommend to anyone interested in tracking blog updates to get an RSS reader, they are like micro news machines.

Hello Chantal
Glad you got it second time round, let’s just say it came close to my grand disowning me. It was interesting to hear your feedback and interpretation and I was glad to hear it was on the lines I was aiming for.

Hello Claire
Always good to see new faces on here and glad you liked my bizarre creation, which admittedly does stick out from the rest of my creations I have displayed on this blog.

Good to hear why it appeals to you also and it helps illustrate what you must be seeing a glimpse of through your research. It is a concern that we are playing around with the way we look as humans. My main worry is where will this stop and where it is leading to,

I believe your local dentist (UK) now offers cosmetic surgery of some kind…hmmm. Teeth whitening, one filling and new lips to go please!

My other concern if the inevitable is realized is if our species, humans that is, change our skins (or vehicles shall we say) as we do with our clothes?…now there is something to think about and if we did would they shrink in the wash 🙂

Hello Robert
Thank you for the feedback and the highlighting of new artist related to my painting.

Yeah was a little annoying but as we all know art is subjective so it was all down to the judges present to select work from what was submitted.

When I first came up with the idea it was initially a dark vision I saw and I did think about painting it similar to H.R.Geiger (the guy who created the alien designs). I changed my mind when I came to create the final piece and decided I would like to present a bright and minimal composition to keep the viewers focused on what my message was. I wanted it to feel well lit like a retail environment and the figures them self’s to almost look like rubber or silicon to use a better word.

I take your point a more shocking approach might of demanded more attention from the judges but the core concept was to illustrate a glimpse of the future and how I visualized it, or to translate that explanation a society where changing ones body as and when we wanted is acceptable and accessible.

The size is about a meter across by 80cm down from memory.

Thank you for your compliments and I hope you visit back, as always I will check all the visitors post blogs out.

Hi, I’m no art expert but I like what I see here and I love the way you show the progression of your work too.

Thanks for the compliment ‘Sweet Talking Guy’ You dont have to be an expert to appreciate any form of art. You ever like it or you don’t.


well, screw the royal academy, i like it.

my favorite part is the empty third coat hanger. it’s what happened in this scene just before you painted it that intrigues me the most.


Hello Katherine.

Good to hear your views again. Glad you liked it and I like your response about the Royal Academy, guess this one didn’t float the 3 judge’s boat.

If my memory servers me correct a broken shiny purple egg (sculpture) won the acclaimed first prize of £25,000 (approx $60,000).

That is interesting about you picking up on the third hanger; I’m surprised nobody else noticed this element of the painting. The theory behind this decision is to illustrate we as consumers (humans) are already buying into this bizarre product and are in fact starting to wear it.

Will pop over to your site to see what you been up to!

Bobby Mookini

Effin brilliant works. Well thought out and nicely executed. It is a deep piece, I’m really glad someone shares a somewhat liken view of humanities shell.

Oh yeah, and grans are never in approval of the more dissidant works.

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