One of the fantastic things about art is the many styles present thanks our cultural differences throughout the world. An intriguing thing to think about is not just the differences but also the common themes that are present for all humans. A summary of the human condition that’s transcendent of our nationality or upbringing.
Colour is an obvious one that binds us all, but I believe light and shadow is also so vital. This affects how we perceive everything around us and is not easy to capture or explain. I think both of these have been depicted here quite wonderfully by British artist Ian McKeever in his series ‘Hours of Darkness Hours of Light’ and ‘Hours’.
McKeever is a sculptor, painter, draughtsman, photographer and teacher. Now living in Dorset, Ian’s inspiration comes partly from his religious upbringing and partly from a discomfort with his own body. Through painting he has been able to overcome this discomfort, using this medium to step outside of the body and reach the “inner self”.
Most of McKeever’s works start with sensing an abstract form that he later tries to depict. They are not exact, and there is definitely a sense of mysticism behind them. I noticed a main element always centres your eye, similar to a window or cave that you can work toward or find solace in.
This sense of discovery was what was so appealing. We often see the complete, the true image of something when life is actually never that simple. There’s a murkiness, a struggle, and for those who can find it a quietness even with all the uncertainty swirling around us. McKeever’s work consoles even if it’s just for a moment.