Selected for The Duke Gold Coast Art Prize

 This work has been shortlisted for the 2010 Stan and Maureen Duke Gold Coast Art Prize. The exhibition opens 4th December at the Gold Coast Art Gallery.

Plastic Dolls Shoes and Novelty Key ring   102 x102 cm oil on canvas

I have been wanting to do a painting using these cast off Barbie/ Brats doll shoes and have combined them with a circa 1970’s kitsch key ring of an African female child. 

As always I find objects can be quietly powerful containers. Thoughts about child slavery and human trafficking become the disturbing contents. The abhorrent trade in human lives is a growing industry in our world. 

I’ve read that every 26 seconds a child is sold or lured into sexual slavery. In the West we give our young girls highly sexualised toy dolls to play with, yet in so many nations children have no shoes and are lured or forced into the slave trade.

So often things that seem worthless and abject are at the same time, precious and valuable and still have the quiet power to contain our memories, reflect our emotions and become metaphors for important issues.