Rogue acrylics

“Bario fish”, acrylic on plywood

Every morning kids from the fishing village brought us a string of reef fish, for sale. Every morning fish was different, and I started painting different species in my diary, before I gutted them for the kitchen. I collected about 60 species, some unknown even to the fishermen. Fish became an important subject of my larger paintings.

“Lizard on a cross”, acrylic on plywood

Developing the subject of senseless slaughter of little animals, (as in “Fairy light”) composition again got away from me.

“Madona with a child”, acrylic on plywood

I was shocked when our catholic neighbours told me that according to their belief Mary was fifteen when she had the infant Jesus.

“St.Nicolas calming the storm”, acrylic on board

My Russian grandfather Nikolai was a seaman. I have never met him, but I was told that I inherited many traits from him, and I retain a soft spot for the name. When I saw a Renaissance painting of “St.Nicolas banishing a storm”, I immediately saw my own version of it. When I see a complete painting shimmering in front of my eyes, it’s only a matter of slapping the paint on board. It takes about three full days.

“Nuye”, acrylic on plywood

Before I went to live in the mangroves, I spent many years in the urban jungle. The Rat comes courtesy of Harry Clarke.

Photos by Nat from

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