‘Boxed’ is a woodcut print that describes captivity. Kirkpatrick states that the positioning of the character is both uncomfortable and deliberate, suggesting that the folded figure could be hiding or self-imprisoned. There is a tension here between the motivation and the impact of the confinement on the figure. The image stirs parallels with an internal conflict akin to Jekyll and Hyde, the wide-open eyes convey a sense of alarm but not panic, the entrapment is interpretable as an expression of a past guilt or future potential shame. The figure’s muscular form and yet pliable shape, further conveys a sense that the figure is self-imprisoned or at least compliant, as it is not straining or resisting. The warm reds and yellows convey a sense of as yet unharnessed power, the green about the eyes, lips and coiled flesh, suggests a rationality to the rawer reds, yellows and thick blacks. The figure seems to understand the dimensions of the box it inhabits, the box has become a chrysalis of sorts, but will the figure pupate or remain pubescent.
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Artwork available to purchase from the Engine Room Gallery from the 5th of September
The Engine Room Gallery
414 Newtownards Road