The practice of making art has been primary to many cultures as a way to facilitate and validate encounters with what we are not. As an urban artist moving to the county of Cornwall nothing prepared me for the brutal otherness of the maritime environment.  I started painting the sea in order to mediate the impact of the uncompromising otherness and the shockingly nonhuman in which I found myself.

The genre of sea painting is very familiar, but my object is to repurpose this familiarity for our contemporary time. The shifting of our environmental equilibrium will have an unimaginable impact on our oceans, but in our daily lives this is mostly hidden from view by romantic conceptions of the sea.  I intend my paintings to represent a future sea, a post human sea, beyond the romanticising so often associated with this genre. Art helps us to imagine what we can’t see and that imagining helps us to survive a new future.

Ilric Shetland – January 2017

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