Medium: Watercolors, modeling paste, freshwater pearls, red coral, amber, antique brass, modeling paste, melted metallic pigments czech glass beads


Size: 28" x 40"


Original $5,785 SOLD


Prints
: Unavailable until the dispute between Peter Beagle and Conlan Press is settled.  I have no comments on the matter, I am simply waiting to see where it all falls out.

Exhibits:

Urban Arts Gallery March - April 2016
Pandemonium Arts Gallery June - July 2016

Description:

I was hired by Conlan Press to do a piece for the reprint of the Last Unicorn graphic novel. This was the final piece for their book, and I'm ridiculously happy with how it came out.

This scene in the movie really struck me hard, as did the entire concept of the red bull. In book and movie, he is a mystery. Is he controlled by Haggard, does he control the king? Are they part of each other? Is he a demon, some magical conjuration?

They mention repeatedly that the King is so dour, so full of misery that the moment he set foot on the land in his kingdom, everything withered away. He is possessive, and elitist. He will not have balls, parties, anything that does not live up to his standards. Even his son he keeps at a vague distance as though he is obligated to keep the boy around even though he no longer finds happiness in having a son.

I don't know what the red bull is, or meant to be.. I only know that the minute the prince was hit by the bull... everything changed. It wasn't just that the unicorn was shocked, that hte people were. For the first time you see actual shock and ... a weird emotionlessness in Haggard. And that's the moment the bull literally gives up.

That was no fight on the beach, no matter how much everyone goes 'she's fighting back!'. The bull had *completely stopped his attack* when the Prince went down. It is a massive creature that outweighs the unicorn, has some pretty good defenses against her weaponry and has been terrifying unicorns of years. And yet it doesn't put up a fight at all. It just backs up as she advances, and then with resignation, turns into the sea.

In some ways I feel that the bull represents the only humanity left in Haggard. The part that longs for happiness and so does anything to bring that happiness. It's first attack on the prince was not to kill, and it's the ONLY time you see the bull not just rush to kill. It was a targeted attack simply to disarm the prince. The prince's death was purely an accident on the part of the bull and the unicorn, both of whom seem to be intent on avoiding causing the prince harm.

It's always fascinated me, that moment. Be it in the book or in the movie and I wanted to just.. catch that feeling of powerful surrender. That's why the Unicorn herself is not in the painting, it's not about her... it's about him. He gives himself to the sea willingly, even as haggard falls to join him.

There is a tragedy about Haggard and the Bull, that just.. makes me wonder about them. Maybe I'm reading too deep into it, but it *feels* deeper than what's been shown on the surface. And as the cat says... no cat out of it's first fur would be deceived by appearances. Unlike human beings, who seem to enjoy it. Arr.   ... was that a warning, not just the obvious with the unicorn, but the bull? Haggard? Did that cat know the truth, could he have helped them solve a deeper puzzle?

So many questions.