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#210: Swathes

Odd Spot - The Age - 30/09/2022

The hangover has purged all memories of the night before. Pinpricks of light emerge here and there, a bathtub, a street with a people, and a broken window.

Nothing else.

The turmoil in his brain and a bloodied fist are evidence that he’d been drinking.

Josh stands in the studio unable to concentrate on anything. He knows that today is the last day to complete the show. By 5pm tonight, thirty pieces need to be packed and trucked to the gallery.

At last count, he had twenty-eight.

Is this why he drank so much last night? To self-sabotage himself when he was this close to having his first solo show?

He pulled out the largest canvas he had and immediately painted large swathes of black. The large brush giving a sense of death and failure.

He left little pockets. In charcoal, he sketched what memories remained. The people in his mind’s eye are vague shapes, most watching him. On the canvas, he adds expressions, all of disgust of whatever he is doing.

In another space, he draws a clenched fist about to hit the viewer. He isn’t sure if it is his, or someone else’s. He rubs his finger over the stubble on his face and confirms the tenderness. Someone must have hit him.

Josh only hopes it was a fair fight.