paintings by William Fahey


  1. recent
  2. past

Artist's Statement


My work is an expression of my personal pursuit of meaning through mythology, world religion and the pre-history of humankind. There I have found rich symbols of psychological depth, a visual vocabulary of subjective, non-linear, poetic aspects of human experience. These are not relics, but a living language in which our psyches still speak in dreams and imagination. My concern is to show their continuing importance for our sense of wholeness and self. Further, I want to suggest that the "real" world is less objective than our current understandings would allow.

I delight in painting impossible things with an earth-bound naturalism. When I was a boy, I admired the realistic depictions of ancient times and cultures in National Geographic Magazine. Likewise, I greatly enjoyed science-fiction cover art. As a young man and artist, I was strongly influenced by the imagery of the Symbolists and Surrealists. I see my style as a merging of these disparate threads.

Drawing is fundamental to my process. Since what I'm trying to paint usually does not exist, I seek out photographic reference and do sketches and studies for various elements. Animals often appear in my images. They speak of the earth, spirit, power, our position in the natural world, as well as the more-than-human and the less-than-human in our own natures. In this work, I'm trying to point to the unseen, to create a sense of newness and mystery, to hint at deep experiences and encourage their exploration.