10 artists, 10 weeks-Week 10. Michael Hayter
Confrontational and uncompromising, Michael plunders the abstract messiness of what it is to be human and comes up with powerful figurative narratives that can be tough to look at.
His subject is his own psychological journey. He is the main protagonist in the drama and struggle that all artists must engage with if they are to produce meaningful authentic work. This is the thread that links good contemporary art to all great art of the past. I feel the tug of that thread on a deep psychic level when I look at Michael’s paintings. I am reminded at times of the narrative works of Ken Kiff.
All possible emotions are present, anger, sadness, despair, humour and love along with a certain meditative quality all in the narrative and application of paint and mixture of media that can contain hair, sugar and saliva.
In ‘Into The Arms of Endymion’ a naked figure wrestles with a mythical dark clown like figure of his alter ego. Animals are sometimes present either alone or entwined in some way with the figures. In ‘Man & Ape’, the two figures are locked in an embrace that completely obscures the man’s face. In most cases human faces are hidden, turned away, wreathed in the clouds as in the ‘Mystery of being’ or headless as in ‘The argument’.
In ‘P.A.Y.E’ a character on the run is caught in a net, thrown by his unseen pursuers. He covers his face with despair.