Joint Family screen, 1995

3 wooden panels 2.5 ft in the width and 5 ft in height. Oil paint on wood. Sold.

On this screen I painted a joint family with an elderly widow and her daughter whose husband is middle class. He stands at the left of the screen wearing a typical safari suit worn by office workers. Next to him stands his peon (office messenger).This family is taking its first steps on the ladder of progress but still has relatives in the village.

The village family are depicted in the middle of the screen with a small baby. The couple is very traditional. One cannot see the small baby when you look at the back of the screen.All you see is the backs of all the adult figures. You can see the lady in red is wearing heels symbolising her rising status. When you walk to the front of the screen it becomes clear that things are not so simple.

Openings painted on the screen depict the struggle of the family to fit in with the new life opportunities that are opening up for them. The shoes that they are wearing show the reality. You can see that the couple in the middle of the screen has a little baby and its bare feet are in their own separate opening. The hands coming out of openings are struggling to find a place where they belong. The openings at the top of the screen show the mouth of every person in the family thinking of the right words to say as they move in new environments unfamiliar to them.

The question is what future will this baby have?