Acrylic on canvas
152.5 x 91.5 cm
Gabrielle Rich Aouad was a great friend of my wife Tessa’s. They went to school together. At the tender age of 23, Gabrielle was diagnosed with advanced stage Hodgkin’s disease. Her incredible strength, feistiness never failed through months of her painful treatment. She was fearless in every way. Gabrielle was an honours graduate from Oxford University, fluent in five languages, a champion skier, an expert in horseback riding and a skilled rock mountain climber. She was utterly fearless and this was the theme of the painting, to celebrate her infectious and energetic personality and at the same time help raise funds for her families foundation. Their incredible work over the last two decades of funding has helped to improve the efficiency of cancer treatments, reduce their toxicity and improve the quality of life of patients. The purpose of ‘Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation’ for Cancer Research is to encourage the development of more effective therapies for patients with leukaemia, lymphoma and related cancers. This painting highlights several fearless women, Bette Davis, Coco Chanel, Simone de Beauvoir and my daughter Tallia. The painting is also a reminder to us all that life is so precious and finite. This celebration of wonderful fearless women embody the existential vision to live life in the now. Yes, ladies live your life in the present at its fullest speed and be captured by its vital force to create and change the world into a better place. On the left hand-side we see little cherubs, God's angels to safeguard life, and two more characters that are an homage to Banksy. The first is an innocent little girl with fluffy wings, still at the start of her life, representing the innate love to live. Next to it we find a defeated angel, with his head down, pushing an old rusty bike, representing death. A reminder to us all to live for today.
All artists proceeds from the sale of prints of this painting will be donated to the Gabrielle Angel Foundation.