Artist Statement

Gordon Belray photo Om dat de werelt is soe ongetru
Daer om gha ic in den ru

In that the world is so untrue
Therein I go in rue.1

I work from historical and contemporary film and photographic sources to create narrative compositions of significant social and political events, the tragedies, histories and sometime comedies of the 20th and 21st-centuries.

The work employs the compositional techniques of history paintings  or "story painting"  using mulitple manipulated details2 of people, architecture and landscapes, meticulously selected from film and video stills, photographs, crime scene documents, maps and street views to create the final tableaux.

I sample as many contemporaneous sources as relevant to the composition and strive for historical accuracy, taking poetic license in the drama of the moments chosen to depict these stories.

The work is indebted to the intrepid documentarians who recorded these events for posterity.

N.B. Measurements indicate maximum print dimensions but are variable.

1 Flemish inscription from The Misanthrope, Pieter Bruegel the Elder. Rue - sorrow, mourning.
2 Usually hundreds of stills and photographs but as little as three and upward of a thousand.


For inquiries about exhibiting, publishing or commmissions please contact:

Instagram @gordonbelray
Twitter @gordonbelray

Exhibitions & Publications