Mike is currently Artist in Residence at the Cliffe Castle Museum in Keighley (West Yorkshire) in preparation for a large solo exhibition there in July 2020.
Mike will be exhibiting a new series of 20 Monoprint 'Quandary Heads' at the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle. This one is titled 'Zoom' Oil on Paper 45 x 60cms
"When an image becomes too defined, or too easily known, it can lose some of the mystery that keeps us engaged. I have to work at losing the image and a fixed narrative. It's a fine line between ambiguity and being completely inaccessible. There has to be an allure without resulting in complacency."
'Cluster Head' 2014 Dry-point and watercolour 35x35cm
Mike has recently been taken on by a commercial print company.
Mike continues to create new monoprint characters and suggestions of life stories. "It's exciting to form out of nothing an imaginary community and sense of place. I like to suggest a background to these maligned personalities either in the titles or some landscape detail - but nothing definite, just the ambiguity of not quite understanding what is going on, or what might or has happened."
Redon: "nothing must be defined, nothing must be understood, nothing must be limited and nothing must be made explicit, because everything that is sincerely and humbly new - like beauty itself, indeed carries its meaning in itself"
"The fluidity of the monoprint technique means you can relinquish some control to encourage happy accidents. These can surprise you and keep a piece fresh and interesting. You run with the mistakes. That's the theory anyway.
This image of a swan taking flight began as a 'Quandary Head' portrait with the paper turned 90 degrees to the right."
Mike is exhibiting his recent series of monoprints (The Quandary Heads) at The Biscuit Factory in Newcastle until the middle of March 2014.
(work is also shown on other walls
and in browsers).