Andy Harper’s painting Time Sickness is part of a series of paintings inspired by the 1962 science fiction novel “The Drowned World” by British writer J.G. Ballard.
The story portrays a post-apocalyptic and unrecognisable London submerged by water and tropical temperatures. The few characters in the book are isolated in the city, while the rest of humanity has chosen refuge at the cooler poles.
“Time Sickness” is a term the writer uses to describe the character's loss of a sense of time and ultimately reality. Ballard’s vision of isolation and its psychological undercurrents during a world in crisis hauntingly fits into our current times.
Harper’s paintings are full of detail, crafted with thousands of precisely executed brush strokes that are technically accomplished and versatile to result in hugely complex compositions of often unexpected clarity and luminosity.
Already the sheer size of Time Sickness (190 x 300 cm) combined with the abundance of visual information are overwhelming. Its seemingly uncontrolled undulating thick jungle of plants is spirally sucked into an abyss, where it seems to disappear.
To engage with Harper’s paintings means to enter a whole new world on its own terms. In Time Sickness, flora and fauna are taking over our world, menacing and simultaneously beautiful. An existing reality is absorbed, while a new one is in creation.