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The Spinach Project
A collaboration with Verne Harrison as part of Oshawa Space Invaders 2014

An installation to reflect on art and pop culture. 

A lost icon reflecting on his place in history. A man from another time when honour was worth fighting for. A man lost and found, pragmatic but in search of some higher purpose.

The small selection of Verne Harrison’s paintings (and an Inuit style soapstone sculpture) from a larger series of works executed in styles of the masters anchors this collaboration with my installation which offered a most unusual surprise on opening night of the Oshawa Space Invaders Art Festival. Bringing the piece to life was Grand Marshall of the Chester, Illinois Popeye Festival, Denne (Korney Popeye) Kornechuk. Korney went to school in Oshawa in the late 1940’s before becoming a sailor and a truck driver.

Created by Elsie Chrisler Segar in Segar’s hometown of Chester, Illinois, Popeye is based on Frank "Rocky" Fiegel, (born 1868) a man who was handy with his fists. 

Popeye is considered by many a precursor to the superhero. His mantra “I yam what I yam” sounds like it should be the precursor to philosopher Rene Descartes’s “Cogito ergo sum”, “I think therefore I am.” Popeye’s philosophy makes no excuse for not being able to restrain emotion.

Takes on Francis Bacon and Inuit sculpture by Verne Harrison

For more images of the Spinach Project and to see the other art shown in that space at Oshawa Space Invaders 2014 click here.

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