Using Still Life to Make Political Commentary

by JoAnne McFarland in Choosing Subject Matter
As part of developing my oil painting technique, I created a series called Use in a Sentence, based on botanical prints, with their fine detail, and script that often provides genus and species.
Use in a Sentence combines double meanings for words—for instance BEET (noun) and BEAT (verb), or CHARD (noun) and SHARD (verb), which sound the same but certainly mean very different things!

(text on painting reads: Immigrant peppered with 41 bullets)

The work exploits our expectations by presenting an image we easily understand, with a journalistic phrase that alludes to the violent scenarios that seem so much a part of modern life.
The series speaks to my belief that the goal of violence is always to disrupt creativity. This happens under many guises. My goal is to invent in spite of this tide.