25 x 30 cm | 9 x 11 in
Original painting in oil on canvas.
Original mixed media painting in collage and oil on canvas.
"Part of the ‘Monarchs to Mongrels’ series, which charts the role of the monarchy in Deptford and also explores the identity of the criminals who were deported from Deptford Dock, their last view of England being from the site of the Pepys Estate (where I lived). J. C. James was one of these criminals and I am interested in the make up of his identity and where he was from - what constitutes pure blood? What was his DNA?"
Steve Burden constructs images laden with brutalist edges and heavy slabs of colour to express the juxtaposition of humans in urban environments. The works contain a sense of aggression and isolation which is accentuated by Burden’s aesthetic style of scraped-back paint and strong, solid, tonal range. Inspired by his upbringing in the “urban jungle” of London, his paintings contain architectural and figurative elements. The work is evocative of Friedrich Engels observations of the streets of London, “The very turmoil of the streets has something repulsive, something against which human nature rebels.” Burden, however, creates images that not only rebel against the bustling streets and forgotten housing estates but revel and excel within them.