Force Majeure

[ French fawrs ma-zhœr ] noun (Law): an unexpected and disruptive event that may operate to excuse a party from a contract.

6" x 6"

140# cold-press watercolor paper

collage, India ink, duct tape, acrylic ink, matte gel

There’s nothing quite like hovering over the art desk, painting details on coronavirus. It’s a great way to spend a Thursday night.

I needed to juxtapose these perpetrators with a serious image, something with gravity. If I were a comic artist I’d have drawn the classic businessman-handshake-holding-contract while a corona asteroid comes blazing out of the sky. Instead I flipped through my collage magazines and this went a bit darker.

The image is striking on its own. The virus hovers over his head, like our collective anxiety. It says something about how life feels; small business owners trying to hang on, wondering if they’ll make it. Individuals hoping that staying at home is enough to prevent meeting a virus hand to face. Like many of us, this guy is alone because he’s under self-quarantine. Also like us, he’s being creative with a make-do face mask. He might be a little depressed, but so far he’s doing OK.

Note: I’ll need to seal this piece when it’s warm enough, so it will end up with a slight sheen on the photo portion.

Force Majeure mixed media word COVID painting by Sarah M. Schumacher