September 24, 2017. My friend lost his brother in a senseless murder. His name was Jade Gayle and his murderers were acquitted of their crime.
Upon hearing this news, the family decided to put an event together to appeal for witnesses. An event in which people could come and both celebrate Jude’s life and really reflect on that evening, prayerfully recollecting their memories for some shred of of potential evidence. I was asked by Jude’s mother, to do a live painting.
I was inspired by one of my favourite artists, Chris Ofili and his response piece to the murder of Stephen Lawrence, No Woman, No Cry (1998). Ofili focuses on the pain of the mother, her anguish and her tears (in which Stephen appears in every one. That was my starting point. The mother and her children, gone and surviving. The gold in the painting being Jude, he runs through the entire piece.
The painting depicts Jude’s mother mourning the loss of one of her four children while she weeps into the scales of justice, hoping that her tears will somehow shift the balance.
The family still continue to fight for justice. #justice4jude
The Weeping Mother, 2018
Acrylic and pencil on canvas
Framed courtesy of Sean Johnson of Johnson Picture Framing & Galleries