'Cares Cast' is the penultimate in a series of six oil paintings undertaken by the artist over a period of eight years. Painted in Brett's instinctive style of skilled brushwork combined with thorough observation, extreme foreground detail fades naturally as the eye is led by the receding tide out to the horizon, lending great depth to the perspective. This oil painting is one to make you step back and breathe before absorbing the scene in front of you.
The deep blue sky is reflected in the babbling, ebbing water as it escapes across the pebbles in the foreground. Beneath the surface the coloured abstract shapes of the stones, still submerged, form a contrast in temperature to the warm sunbaked pebbles to the left of the male figure. Further out to sea the waves are pulled reluctantly away from the partially submerged rocks by the power of the tide. Their motion is echoed by the seaweed as it piggybacks the swell around the jagged rocks.
On the horizon we see a disused lighthouse, a monument to a previous generation, replaced long ago by radar and GPS. Between the lighthouse and the man sits a female figure, her legs partially submerged, forming a link between the sea and the man. It is unclear whether she is even visible to the male figure who seems preoccupied. By skimming the stone he is reconnecting with the actions of his youth, by releasing it he is unburdening himself of the load he is carrying.
The lighthouse itself is situated just off the Ards Peninsula in the north east of Ireland. Built in 1797 it is the oldest example of a waveswept rock lighthouse tower still in existence.
Looking a little deeper
In 1972 the lantern was stolen from the top of the lighthouse, never to be seen again. This lighthouse could therefore be viewed as an obsolete guardian from danger, something man made that can't be trusted for guidance.
Turning our eyes once more to the two figures we can see that, like the lighthouse, the female is seated on a rock. However where the lighthouse is so obviously lacking its beacon, this figure has a crown of glowing golden hair. Couple this with what the painting 'Ponder the Path' clearly shows us, a man being led, and we can start to see the significance of the woman.
'Cares Cast' is available to buy as a limited edition print.
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