The Iliad

Colin Olighan

unnamed (3)

There are over 300 named characters in the Iliad and most of them are soldiers, all captured and motivated by deep emotions, running around killing each other continuously.

These soldiers, mostly powerless over their circumstances, are constantly subject to manipulation by the Gods and Goddesses. They are deeply in tune with their physical and emotional torment and are resigned to their fates, which they know they do not control, suffering them constantly and convincingly. Of the 240 battlefield deaths in the Iliad, many are described in gory, anatomical detail.

Made about five years ago Oulighan’s paintings and drawings are the artist’s response to reading the long-form epic. Their skewed compositions, irregular shapes and floating pictorial space echo the sufferings and manipulations of the some 300 cast members, underscoring the arbitrary nature of their actions and fates. Rendered with clean and simple lines the entire group gleams with the artist’s distinct humor and sensibility.