The Malefactor

Oil on Board, 20 x 20 ins. 1981

One of Bryan Cahrnley’s earliest paintings in which he attempts to find a visual language to describe his experience, in this case that of hospitalisation. The right hand side of the painting shows a hospital bed within an institutional environment. The alien figure of Darth Vader holding a toothbrush and tube of paste dominates the painting which includes, to the right hand side, the imagined interior of a space ship. The effects of heavy medication, alienation and the stigma of mental illness are implicit in the imagery.