Michael Swaney is a Canadian artist, born in Kimberley in 1978. He currently lives and works in Barcelona (Spain). Swaney defends an access to simple, inclusive and non-elitist art, drawing his references from popular culture, daily life and his childhood.
« After all these years, I have come to believe that I have retained a memory bank for ways that I used to draw certain things as a child and can still access that now »
We find in his works his fascination for the spontaneity of Art Brut and « outsiders ».
Searching for random, he approaches his creations in a direct and intuitive way, enjoying painting where his hands guide him.
« I first draw the silhouette of the hand and then begin to fill each finger with details. Often I’ve decided on the color palette before even starting but the details begin to pour out without much planning »
Michael Swaney develops through his creative impetus, an ethic of accessibility of the artistic gesture, carried by the universality of his themes and forms. He regularly invites the public to participate in his projects.
Hamsa Finger Family is a bronze sculpture produced by the Bomma Gallery and realized by the Rosini Art Foundry, using the lost wax casting technique. Michael Swaney chose to keep the raw brilliance of the sculpture, without applying a patina, in order to keep a hue close to white gold. A durable conservation treatment is additionally applied by a gilder. The edition includes 8 original works and 4 artist’s proofs, signed and numbered. Each sculpture also bears the stamp of the art foundry. The height is 28 cm.
This bronze hand is for Swaney a positive and universal symbol, inspired by a series of videos called «Finger Family» that he discovered with his daughter. Hamsa Finger Family is approached by the artist as an object of protection, a fetish or a good luck charm offering different levels of readings and which testifies to his deep attachment to what he considers to be his spirituality: «my religion is Art and Nature».
« Hands are such a universal element in all the arts of ancient civilizations that they carry this power with them, no matter how they are represented »
Michael Swaney has recently exhibited at Sorry We’re Closed, L21, Gnyp Gallery.
In 2019, a painting from the Finger Family series joined the collection of the Mima Museum.
© Pictures by Nicolas Despi - Courtesy Michael Swaney & Galerie Bomma.