Between the ages of twelve and fourteen Charlie played
truant from school on an almost continuous basis. He wandered
the woods, hiding and seeking. He didn’t know what he
was seeking, but these pictures are probably nearest to the
fantasies in his teenage mind.
Luscious men served-up on a bed of wildflowers.
Charlie paints iconic male images in rich oils on everyday
objects such as table tops and chopping boards. The use of
these wooden objects gives his work an added edge. Originally
lovingly crafted for use in the home, Charlie transforms them
into baroque altar pieces or shrines to male beauty. More
usual in religious paintings or images of royalty, the baroque
style adds a spiritual content above and beyond the homoerotic.
(It is perhaps appropriate that these recipes for masculine
beauty should be served up on table tops. What could be better
hanging over your dining table?)
Charlie has always included elements of myth and fairy tales
in his work and these figures could be knights lost in the
woods or even the sleeping beauty himself. The plants Charlie
has chosen are themselves full of symbolism as their names
suggest: bindweed, cuckoo-pint, mistletoe, nightshade, morning
glory and ivy-leaved toadflax.
Paintings on wood from an earlier series called Rising
Son are also included in the exhibition.