In Light Of

11 July 2022

Photography Tricia Turner
Words Cat Evans
Production Peter Bishop

Slivers of light extend through a pane of windows. At first glance, the light seems to travel into nothingness. Another glance from below, where solid ground meets steady feet, the light encompasses walls of a room filled with sloshes of fervent desire and curious eyes. Eyes that stare back and wonder if there is truth in the art of connection and discomfort. Colours fade in and out like the wheel of a boy's fluctuating state, where emotions meet fluid brush strokes.

White walls meet dazed spirals and rooted figures, conjured by confident hands and mounted with care. Artist Stephen Harper makes a soft landing onto cement floors assuaged by years of exploration and discovery. Characters animate the space around him and fill it to the brink with critical thoughts, dancing between the line of secret oaths and spirited vows. The volume is turned all the way up as Stephen sings the songs of self-expression.

Tricia Turner documents Stephen through her lens, energy bouncing and moulding between the two of them as the painter shares the corners and crevices of his space. Inner dialogues are coveted and decorated in hues of burning oranges, earthy greens and striking blues. An artist in front of their own internal landscape, where the walls never close in and creations stand tall. In this land, judgement reigns, but the artist pulls the reins right back and turns the tables.

The heat of the day slopes and slides down the nape of necks and between shoulder blades in the rolling landscape of California. Canvases replace the scenery as their very own terrain, where roads are filled with boundless streams of gut feelings and intuition. Stephen's art is worn like a heart on his sleeve, an unapologetic and endless kinship that never turns its back. The sun melts onto springy smiles and strong stances, fabricated into the glow of the day’s warmth. There is a light growing into something blinding, where new perspectives and creations are born. A light that never seems to wane.

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