murals, pop art, portraits by Maria Beadell
New arrival....Little Angel.
Winter has set in and it's getting darker...as are my paintings! this one seems a little macabre but never fear, I am in a rather sunny state of mind at the moment! Special aesthetic thanks to the Chapman Brothers and Ossian Brown - whom I borrowed from for this work. Also heavily influenced by 18th/19th century gothic art such as William Blake and Fuseli, and of course my own love for creepy horror films and killer children!
Aside from a rather tongue-in-cheek dig at my increasingly broody, sprogged-up group of friends and the never-ending slideshow of 'adorable baby' pics that have taken over social media as a result, this painting does have another message. The cherubic child holds a bleeding heart seemingly ripped from the shrouded, ghostly figure on the left. The equally ghostly masked child on the right sports bleeding, amputated stumps instead of hands, while grotesque, grinning devils/demons loom menacingly in the background. The painting is intended to be unnerving and darkly comic at the same time. Is our Little Angel responsible for a murder? Is she inherently evil? or is she the victim of larger, darker outside forces? With this I was experimenting with our expectations and ideas about good and bad, innocent and (not so) innocent. Society /media often creates a pre-conceived 'face' of evil, and as a consequence we often can't accept- or punish more severely- anything that doesn't fit it (e.g killer mothers/children). We also often downplay the external forces- societal and cultural - that shape our behaviour. It's easy to label someone as inherently 'evil' but are we not all to blame? The classic satanic/demonic figures in this painting could also represent these important societal forces. How could this tiny child rip out someone's heart, unless she is led to do so (or helped) by something more powerful than herself?
On a more personal level, this painting can be read as an allegory of love. The girl has ripped out someone (possibly a man's?) heart. She holds it, she is in control. She stares out of the canvas steadily and confidently. make of that what you will!