Today’s piece comes from one of the UAG’s own, Sean Bodley! Sean worked at the UAG from 2008-2011, and this piece was printed in 2010. It is currently installed to the left of our door, alongside a label with information about the history of the student art collection.
This piece feels like a glimpse into another specific land and time that is anchored in recognizable images even as it includes more fantastical elements. It contains sci-fi and industrial elements with the large ship in the background and the metal structure underneath the figure, but it also contains striking natural elements that pop out to the viewer much more than the man-made objects. With this contrast, there seems to be an inherent tension between the beige futurism and the vibrant environment depicted in this print, with the natural world as a focus. I got a chance to ask Sean to tell me a little bit more about working on this piece: “the process for the painting was to just try painting something really big based on a small sketch. I was in a painting class with Kay Knight at the time I believe. I used my fellow classmate as the figure, up in the painting studio. The intent was to create a painting about how to remain calm when disasters are hurtling at you. It was created in 2010, and was inspired by my anxiety around how technology is fueling catastrophic climate change.”
Sean Bodley is a “climate artist creating science fiction solutions.” He is currently pursuing a career in the entertainment arts in Los Angeles, CA, specifically as a background artist for animation. In his spare time, he works on his art skills with the Warrior Painters, a plein air painting group, and is “always trying new tools and learning from other artists on how to make the best work possible.” You can find more of his work at https://seanbodley.com/
Visual Description: A figure with a bald head, a beard, glasses, and a white shirt sits cross-legged on a field of grass. A spindly fir-looking tree stands behind him. This patch of grass is held in a beige, square metal structure with bolts and a small porthole on the side facing the viewer. This structure is held up by a pipe that is attached to a larger beige metal structure below. Multiple other patches of grass held up in the air by spindly pipes can also be seen below. A large beige spaceship is in the background. It seems to have been hit and the top part of it is on fire. Large fire balls are raining from the sky, seemingly sent from the sun in the left-hand corner or an off-stage source. The sky is filled with clouds towards the horizon and where there are no clouds, the sky is a bright blue with a faint impression of the moon.