Das Küche, 2021. Working title "Lamentation"

Water simmers and the smell of salty bouillon fills the kitchen. The cook thumbs through a recipe book, hoping for inspiration. He has dozens of them, but how many times has he actually tried anything from one of his cookbooks?

We eat the same things most of the time. But sometimes you just have to try something new.

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This painting suggested itself to me several days before I actually started working on it. I'm still proud of how it came out! I don't like looking at it, though.

I tried a few different glass effects in Das Küche, such as the glass of the porthole, the clock crystal, and the privacy glass behind the catwalk. It is, I think (and goodness, I say this a lot) mostly successful. I used the clock reflection technique again in The Fugitive (2022) to good effect.

I didn't have a statement I was trying to make when I painted this, but as often is the case with my work I juxtaposed mundanity (that same privacy glass, a recipe book) with existential horror (the experience of being meat.) It's hard not to look at it as a statement on the ethics of carnivory. Is it strange to be critiqued by one's subconscious self? Ask somebody who knows.

Within the world of Otherwhere, and by the standards of his own people, I do not think Küche is a bad person. He is feared by handheld-size people, and for good reasons. That's a guy I do not want to meet.

The Hylozoist is a long-form digital project I began in February 2020. Each painting tells a story, and each painting tells another story when viewed in context. Also, each painting can be followed to the next painting in the series if you follow the most interesting thing in the scene.

To see more paintings from the project, click here.