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... one of the Mile End boys ...
The last studio was on Mile End Farm which supports some five hundred ewes. They are 'attended' to by only six or eight rams.
These fellas have a funny existence. For eleven months of the year they hang around the field looking bored. One might suggest a trip up to the top of the field ... or down ... maybe a game of three-a-side ... or not.
Then for three weeks or so they leap into frenzied life - almost maniacal in their attention to duty. These normally easygoing guys can become irascible and argumentative during this time. I imagine they get exhausted - they have a lot to do!
The other high point of their year is shearing time. Then the challenge is to flip over the shearer - before he flips you over. A lot of ingenuity goes into this sport, as well as an unexpected level of fitness!
It was at this point in the year I decided to take my etching plates into the compound, and draw these boys. I got the impression - fortunately - that they had weighed me up, and decided that I was not part of the main sport.
After some very close inspection - they left me to get on.
Dimensions: Plate Size: 10.5cm x 13cm
Medium: Soft Ground Etching
Edition size: Edition of 25
Collection: Private & Artist's Collection
Works in this period (1995 - 2001):