"Neo-Classical Pop: Poetic Nightmares" (2000):


The paintings are organized disasters. They kick and gasp for air in the stream of media and computer-based technology that is flooding modern society. Painting has become an antiquated practice locked away in the deep-freeze of history – or has it?


Poetic Nightmares are images of art history turned sitcom. Age-old painting techniques are sewn together with dreams, reality, advertising, genetic engineering, graffiti, nursery rhymes, movies, and mounds of luxury consumer items in a patchwork quilt of imagery.

Whereas my earlier work contained a clear distinction between the figure and the ground, the new paintings are ambiguous in this use of space. The effect is that of constant unrest and a shifting and tilting of the picture plane creating a sense of unease and imbalance.

The paintings embody a large range of human traits and emotions. Love, violence, gender issues, vanity, humour, fear, pathos, greed, and hope are all entangled in the glossy colour-saturated painted layers, examining the human situation and the place painting takes in our history.

all content © Lisa Birke 2015