Red Earth - A Banner for Monte Cassino 2013
(1800cm x 900cm. Acrylic and crayon on canvas)
New Zealand artist Geoff Tune writes of this work:
The title "Red Earth" came via P J Harvey's lyrics "The Colour of the Earth" from the CD Let England Shake. She sourced the words of Vic Nicholson as used by the New Zealand author Maurice Shadbolt in "Voices of Gallipolli". The reference was to the post battle colour of the earth being the colour of blood.
Geoff Tune, 18/02) 2013The painting directly refers to the Monte Cassino landscape - the graves with red roses, the monastery and the hill itself with its terracing taking on the appearance of steps. It reaffirms that there was blood soaked earth and that the blood is in effect still there, forever part of the hill. The image is however one where the process produces a dematerialising effect, reflecting that history, legend and myth are over time becoming the only remaining experience of the events that are directly accessible, emerging from the darkness and indeterminacy of memory.