The Simple Fear Of Rising
Acrylic on Canvas, 50" x 60" An artist profoundly affected by his personal history, Rory Wagner could be very expressive while remaining very secretive. Deeply influenced by great minds and artist of the past, he often included imagery in his paintings that he felt a personal connection with. He strove to engage the viewer emotionally and intellectually, sparking interest in art and historical figures. In this painting, a woman in a brightly colored and intricately beaded dress is surrounded by several monochromatic, spectral-like figures. There is Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis, delving into the conscious and unconscious elements in the mind. Leonardo da Vinci’s horse, commissioned by a client as a monument to his father, was intended to be the largest equestrian statue in the world. The mourner in the bottom right is one of the 40 original statuettes that surrounded the tomb at Bourges of Jean, Duke of Berry, which was begun by Jean de Cambrai and completed by Étienne Bobillet and Paul de Mosselman. The “old one” in the bottom left appears to be looking over his shoulder, perhaps contemplating his past. There is no way for us to know for certain the reasons that Rory chose to incorporate these particular figures in this painting. What we do know is that he wanted to draw us in with powerful imagery, encourage us to explore, motivate us to question, and above all, create our own interpretation, thus experiencing a very personal connection.