Jun 30, 2009

Paint 'Right Way'

Thomas Reid known to Blackstone as 'T.R.' has stepped up as a painter, taking on the rights to stories given to him by his father Cliff Reid. His father, the number one male artists in Blackstone with a solo show in August in Melbourne with William Mora Galleries and a very successful painter, paints what he knows. Cliff paints stories he was told and paints them 'his way', the same way they painted those stories on Singing Rock, the same way those paintings have been painted for many years, raw gestures, symbols, dreaming tracks of the elders and the beings from the dreaming. Thomas is the eldest son of Cliff and Ruby Reid, and the responsibilities of being the eldest are to remember the stories and tell them 'right way'. Cliff told his son 'paint slow way', to make every mark count. The figures will then have character, the lines will have meanings and the story will be told. The image shown here is of a tribal battle. One side is stronger than the other. The strong side have their spears held up high, the figures seem taller, bigger, just like he was told they were in the story. On the weak side some are dying, spears are pierced into their legs, stomachs and heads. The battle is carefully choreographed like a World War 2 Movie, the men falling down, younger warriors are fighting amongst their elders, and there is no hope, they will lose. Thomas tells us that the battle was fought in the dreaming, a battle to warn us of future wars and the seriousness of their consequences? A warning to future generations maybe? Dreaming stories tell us the 'right way to live'. As a human culture all over the world we haven't learned from our own fables and dreaming stories, but did Thomas' ancestors learn to live in peace and not war, did they listen to their own stories? All we can do is learn the 'right way' and hope that future generations are listening.

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