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The Deceits of the World, the Flesh and the Devil

By Michele Waldron-Cooper

Michele is primarily a painter. Her work is figurative, depicting faces and bodies, often contorted and disturbing, with elements of magic realism. Michele’s practice is driven by socio-political concerns and contemporary issues. Sometimes her paintings are centre pieces in larger installations or assemblages.


“Aspiring to complete emotional identification with a painting. Compartmentalising my own feelings while trying to reach into the mind of the person I dedicate my paint brushes to. This has been the technique adopted to create these larger than life and grotesque depictions of morphed and stitched together monsters.


I google countless images on terrible things to provide the stimulation that aids me to formulate and ferment these thoughts and ideas that I share with only myself. No understanding of this process personally only to document in my own painterly way the hideous realisation of how humanity has been let down by another’s greed and avarice. A kind of historical document laid down like a flayed creature that reaches out and snaps something necrotic and demonic in anyone who feasts their eyes upon them.


Some days, I walk away. No longer being able to compartmentalise enough to paint. Capturing what I see in my many roomed mind. Others, I smile at the delicious parody. These moments are fleeting but feel wickedly good. The cheeseburger was one of these moments.


My process takes many hours of patience and equal stages. Sometimes it can take up to 9 attempts to get the expression exactly how I need it to start stitching it together with my paint brushes. Building the musculature of a human face in my head to then distort or morph. Many different skulls lay at my side as I paint. A book on human muscles is now my companion. Different structures are formed as I go. Constantly flicking through imagery. 


At the beginning of these journeys with paint, I must absorb as much about the person as I can. This can make me feel guilt. How can I possibly find some of these personality traits funny, or even endearing? Back to compartmentalising. Shutting it down if need be. But this is the honest depth I go to, to try and capture a likeness, but also the true wicked darkness of my subject…. The Deceits of the World, the Flesh and the Devil.”

Exhibiting Artists


16/06/23 - 23/07/23


The Hidden Wardrobe