Harry Zed Hughes’ painterly world is populated by symbology, ambiguous spaces, and revelations of bright colour emitted from miasmic darkness.
At this point in his career, he paints as an earnest, yet playful surrealist whose work evokes the detail and mystical qualities of James Gleeson and greater luminaries.
Hughes reveals his visions with a rawness of unaffected brushwork, which adds a sophistication to the ambitious subject matter. With a careful palette evocative of William Blake and the romantics, and a delight in illumination of ambiguous objects and fantastical motifs, Harry Zed Hughes controls both the disintegration of the forms and the behaviour of the paint he used to articulate them.
On a curious tipping point between real and imagined spaces – mindscapes, perhaps – the works allows literature, pop-cultural, and Biblical references to occupy epic vistas, pressurised atmospheres, and apocalyptic storms.
Walpurgis Nebulah is a new wave of allegorical painting, that ensnares the meandering visions and forms of the inner psyche with subtle evocations of our contemporary culture and its accelerating futurism. Hughes paints with as much of a nod to the styles of centuries past, as centuries yet to be.