This curious Douglas MacDiarmid artwork of a face within a face tells a complex story of centuries past and the progress of humanity. It’s a striking example of Douglas' use of classical references in his work. In ancient Greek and Roman mythology, the Eumenides were originally the Erinyes or Furies, three primal-goddess monsters of vengeance
Douglas MacDiarmid first explored and painted on the mountainous French island of Corsica while working au pair on a farm in the hills behind the French Riviera. He had just returned to France to make his life as a painter. A long ferry ride from the mainland, the intense light, wild rocky vistas and ramshackle
A surreal landscape given to close friends, émigré photographer Frank Hofmann and his poet wife Helen Shaw, before Douglas MacDiarmid left New Zealand in 1946. It has remained in the family ever since. Allegory says a lot about his state of being at the time. The war had ended in the South Pacific, there was
When Douglas MacDiarmid was young he was immediately attracted to anyone older, interesting, unorthodox – and preferably non-British. Multi-talented Dutch-Javanese artist and emigrant Theo Schoon most definitely fell into the exceptional category. He too was gay and had studied in Europe, a gifted painter, photographer and carver with precious knowledge and understanding of art trends,
In Douglas MacDiarmid's, early years, before the influx of mass tourism and package tours, he travelled footloose and free to see the treasures of the ancient world and spectacular landscapes unsullied by crowds. The world was generally a safer, more hospitable place. There is a long history of terrorism in Europe, dating back over centuries.