After Art School in 1966 I worked stoking boilers at a local telephone exchange from 6am until 2pm – just so I could paint in the afternoons. I then got a job at Rediffusion’s Graphics studios as someone there had seen my drawings and paintings in a graphic arts magazine, and they found me and hired me.
It’s a brave new world for me having a direct relationship with people who look at, enjoy and and buy…
The scene reminded me of an Andrew Wythe painting that I had always adored and had influenced me so much in my own painting and into photography. I felt the extraordinary poetic beauty of the synchronicity of being in the same landscape he had viewed and which had inspired him and now inspired me.
I kept saying “Yes, Arthur in a moment, can’t you see I’m trying to interview one of the greatest guitarists in the world”. I thought a faint smile drifted across Ry’s face but I think that was wishful thinking. Eventually Arthur could contain himself no longer and he said within earshot of Ry ” Mr Arrow you have toilet paper stuck on your forehead”.
I was always admired the mystique created by Ian Hunter always wearing shades much like the fabulous Jeff Lyne of ELO, it is his ‘look’. Shades are part of rock and roll imagery that Dylan used and in my opinion Bono has never quite pulled off (sorry Bono).
Marc’s genius is his painstaking attention to detail, using scale and materials to produce radical and stunning forms. He draws on classical art in a very imaginative way, his blood head self portrait for example reminded me of the death masks of old which were also cast directly from the body.
The suspended box idea was influenced by the box in Francis Bacons paintings, his tryptic of portraits of Lucien Freud (1969) (see below). The set designer and my assistants dashed of and got some chrome effect plastic tubing and cobbled it all together while the GHD Sirens were in hair and make up.
I shot Kirsten in the late 90s when she was promoting her fantastic BAFTA nominated performance in the English Patient which was an eery, moving and unsettling film. Most particularly because she was left in the desert alone with nothing but a book of classical Greek poetry.
Jean, without any sense of irony said, “Mmmmmm, Mmmmm, Enjoy” as if she had presented an eight-course gourmet meal, arms triumphantly gesticulating towards the feast. The maid had very kindly cut the pizza into eight pieces that were no bigger than a minuscule Ortolan.
I found myself being overtaken by a posh accent and my assistants began to comment and laugh. Then I realised it was a hangover from my over doing it the night before and then I realised I had stopped taking drugs 20 years ago, so there was no excuse.