Legacy of the Woods, 1989
Oil on Canvas, 40 x 36


Legacy of the Woods exemplifies Maddox's immersion in Renaissance themes and portraits. Raphael's painterly humanism is reflected in the figures, Botticelli's turquoises were never more primal than the blues in the sky and her dress, the flowers evoke Crivelli in their accuracy, and the background owes much to Venetian landscapes. Yet the work is innovative and almost violent in its departure from traditional ways of viewing women and nature - remember the anthropological dictum that woman is to nature as man is to culture. Here the collaboration has produced the life force itself in the libidinal form of the huge infant satyr who dominates the placid but powerful mother figure; notice too the strength in her clasped hands. In Maddox's formulation, the woman makes herself the alchemical vessel that co-mingles essences to produce an authentic new human nature.



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