012 in AP Art portfolio, early 2009: STORYTELLING: Characters from the Ether.
This piece was originally called "Hairless Heart," based completely on an instrumental from Genesis's double concept album "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway." The scene is described in the sleeve notes and also briefly in the song preceding the instrumental, "Back in N.Y.C."
My take on the concept, though it is open to interpretation, is that every time fur is mentioned in the album, the lamb is implied. The lamb, to me, means innocence. As we grow older, in order to survive, we have to shave away all the innocence.
My father had a different view. He liked this painting a lot more than I did, and he said that when your heart is heavy and concealed by lies, it is hidden in hair, and you've got to shave it off in order to discover the truth of yourself. Now, this can be very dangerous, and you can hurt yourself (the blade is sharp), but it is necessary if you wish to see your true colors.
I like his interpretation better.
What's cool about this painting, and why it is my favorite piece I've ever done, is that it's life-size. I painted on a smaller canvas (can't remember the dimensions right now) and I would stick it over my chest and the hands would match up.
Awesome album, by the way. The weird shit that goes on in Mr. Gabriel's head...