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portrait 3 copy

Why Do You Find It So Hard  To Love Me


Oil, acrylic and charcoal on textured canvas.

120cm x 100cm

Through this painting Gretel delves deep into the workings of the relationship between the the mind and our physical bodies. Often feeling a growing distance from her physical anatomy, Gretel endeavours to dissect and examine what it is that can make it so difficult to apply kindness to oneself. We are reminded to be kind to ourselves, now more than ever, with instant access to self-help books, quotes from figures and literature around the world and videos and tutorials for just about anything you can imagine. But with this saturated pool full of life-rafts it can feel even more daunting and hopeless when you are still unable to apply these nuggets of wisdom and love yourself. 


In this painting Gretel depicts two figures visually divided by colour; emphasising the division between our logical brain and the part of our brain that leans heavily into destructive and damaging  thought patterns. For Gretel this is two very separate parts of her inner mechanics, often causing feelings of alienation inside ones own skin. One part cries out for love, reassurance and nurture, whilst the other faces a sense of unease, feeling incapable of providing the love the other deserves. Though the confrontation is hard it is a necessary evil for the two worlds to collide. It is here where the two must pave a way forward for the both of them to coexist in equilibrium; offering gestures of reassurance amidst the discomfort. Both need love as much as the other, addressing past quarrels and ongoing feuds over extra inches, double chins and endless amounts of other trivial, and natural, imperfections. It seems obvious that the journey to self-acceptance and love is never over, there’s no real destination to arrive at with a big shiny sign saying ‘welcome’. It is about creating a peaceful and accepting space for both parties to be loved and understood.  

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