The idea for this painting was born a little while back following some words my dear friend Mair wrote during the 100th Anniversary of World War One in 2014 and when the ceramic poppies were first launched.
The words came to Mair during the 2 minute silence and she was very much thinking of her Father, who fought in WWI. He came back alive but she says he was never the same man again.
Mair is one of the most young at heart and bright minded octogenarians I have ever known. It has been such a pleasure to have been blessed with knowing her and growing our friendship. I truly believe we are kindred spirits.
She is and always has been a writer, with a wonderful ability to convey her words and tell stories.
I am so proud to finally be combining her words together with my painting for such an important subject matter.
For me it feels such a relevant message, not only for then but for all that followed and for all that is still happening today.
"A RIVER OF BLOOD FLOWS AROUND A MOAT,
CERAMIC POPPIES IN THOUSANDS.
UNLIKE THE FRAGILE POPPIES THAT GREW IN FLANDERS
HERE TODAY AND GONE TOMORROW
THOSE FRAGILE POPPIES ETHEREAL,
SCATTERED WERE LIKE THE MEN WHO LAY THERE,
YOUNG MEN BRAVE AND THEIR BEAUTY BARELY BLOSSOMED,
TO DIE WITH NO KIN TO FOLLOW.
TODAY THE LAST CERAMIC POPPY JOINS THE BLOODY RIVER,
ITS STURDY CONTRAST TO THE FLANDERS FLOWER
DELIBERATE FOR ITS LASTING LONGER.
THE GENIUS OF THE MASSIVE GESTURE IS THERE FOR ALL TO REMEMBER
THAT EVERY POPPY IS A DEAD YOUNG MAN
AND THERE TO MAKE REMEMBRANCE STRONGER"