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Ben Cowan

The Boy and the Social Media Role: I want something more

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This is a sketch that I made in my notebook in response to Charles Mackesy's beautiful book, The Boy, the Mole, the Fox & the Horse, which I have been reading to, and crying with, my children over recent years. Through a fug of nostalgia - Mackesy makes us reflect on love, life and feel gratitude for what we have. I want us also to reflect on our reality too: the role of work in a capitalist society, and in particular the socially acceptable madness that is screens in our lives.

In this piece, the animals - representing nature and our elders - do not confer advice or knowledge. Instead, the boy, the mole and the fox, sit on the horse and stare across the traffic-filled roads; the sky-scraping cityscape of dark, satanic mills, government offices; and the burning red firmament in the distance, with the boy simply stating, “I want something more.” 

For me, this is a moment of steely hope, not desperation. As the mole says in one of the other pieces in this collection, in subversion to the beautiful original text, "The greatest illusion, is that work should define who you are."

Available as a limited edition (60) A4 or A3 Hahnemuele printed on 310gsm fine art paper, or a stretched 15mm canvas, signed by the artist.

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