The Child: Part Three

Do I want to represent the child in the story, or the horror a child faces. Is it all going to be on one painting on canvas, or wood? Oil or acrylic? I decided that the painting is about feelings that transcend one incident, but how to depict raw emotion. I remembered an incident I faced at sixteen. I was on the 3rd floor of a car park and standing by the elevator when a man grabbed me by the throat and started dragging me towards a car. I could see, but not see, hear, but not hear. I couldn’t process what was happening at that moment. My conscious being was gone. I couldn’t move or think. It wasn’t until he almost had me at the car that my primal instinct took over and a scream rose from my belly out of my mouth. All that existed was that scream.
I knew it had to be a screaming child, and had to represent the moment when our conscious mind doesn’t exist. I chose a triptych to represent a feeling of a forced divide and decided on a primitive rendition of a child.

Here is the sketchbook drawing and then the final painting, which is acrylic on wood.
He is trying to hide, but he cannot escape seeing the horror. The white of his face represents innocence, but also fear, and is the colour of mourning and death in the middle east. The landscape is a desert of camouflage.

stay tuned for The Mother: Part Four

Comments

Chana said…
i'm so glad you are here with us and okay. what a horrible story. how dare anyone do stuff like that...my worst fears for my kids right there in your words...i'm so glad you are here...hugs...
jafabrit said…
thanks chana, I screamed sooooo loud that a young man in the shopping center below came racing up the stairs. The man who had attacked me ran off before he could be caught. I used to always critisize the women in movies for not screaming. Well now I know why. Your brain just can't process the reality of what is happening at first and when you do open your mouth nothing comes out.,well eventually it did.
Janvangogh said…
I can see how all these elements and images all fit together in this painting. Very well done.

Not to get commercial, but have you attempted to get into any national shows with this?
Cynthia said…
How frightening! The hair on my neck was standing up as I read your post.

I wasn't quite sure how your painting was going to evolve from your description, but once I saw your sketch..I though ahh ha, she nailed it! Perfect and I love the eye.
jafabrit said…
Hi jan, I wouldn't be able to send it anywhere as it is in a heavy frame with broken glass down the inside of the frame. I did put it in a war and peace show locally, and also in the dayton peace museum opening a couple of years ago. It is, as you probably have guessed, a very personal piece. I am not sure I could let it go to any national shows for personal as well as logistical reasons.
TC said…
That is a disturbing and powerful image.
Dr.John said…
AS I've said on the other two parts thank you for sharing the process> I think the print conveys what you want it to.
kristi said…
I just caught up on reading all of your posts. I really like the painting, no matter what we try not to see or pay attention to, it is always there.

Your story was so intense, you must have been so stunned to not be able to scream or fight. Thank god there was a scream and someone near by to help you
LynClay said…
What a horrifying thing to happen to you and OMG I hope they caught that creep and threw him in jail for life or much worse! You did an awesome job on this!
mandy said…
Wow, thats such a powerful image, I guess it covers a plethora of things some children are unlucky enough to go through, these things do all make us stronger in the long run though.
LauraJ said…
The horror on that child's face is something no child should have to experience. Yet this is the world in which we live. The painting brings to mind my nieces and when they witnessed thier mother's ex-boyfriend killing thier mother's new boyfriend then putting the gun to his head and killing himself. I see how my neices would have felt.
Incredible painting, you can feel the emotion and almost hear the scream.
Part Munch's "The Scream", but all your own. Instead of the simple horror of the scream itself, this brings in the fear of the viewer, the mother, as well. More than one story is being told.

Brilliant!
jafabrit said…
thanks lisa. lauraj I can't imagine children having to witness something like that. The poor darlings. No children should have to be witness to such horrors.
I have been trying to post the complete work but blogger seems to be having probs letting me post arg!!!!!