The Very Model of a Modern Major General – 2009 – 2011
Oil on canvas – 51 x 76cm
Loosely based on the image of Lord Herbert Kitchener of Khartoum. The painting is a parody of a typical British Colonial career officer from the late Victorian and early twentieth century era. While he is a commanding figure sporting a moustache, a monocle and a brace of campaign medal ribbons, he is here depicted dangling from meat hooks and hitched on his own swagger stick. Symbolically he is the penultimate puppet of Empire – The Queen of King’s enforcer. White this is an historical reference it has strong contemporary parallels in Australian culturally backward-looking militarized society. A career officer His Excellency, General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd) is not Australia’s current Governor general but is one of three recipients of an anachronistically created knighthood!