Feeger’s quake masterpiece

Tragedy has the power to unite – and the recent earthquakes in Papua New Guinea have proven that.

Maybe not in every area, but for the art scene in the country, artists are joining hands to show their power in unifying the community and the people.

Artists for a cause, staged on April 7, not only was the biggest music performance to raise funds but also for the first time, brought on stage a visual artist.

15 years now in his painting career, PNG’s renowned Jeffry Feeger has always loved to paint with music.

Since his 2010 performance at the World exposition in Shanghai, China, where he joined musicians on stage, the concept to perform at live concerts was born. 

Artists for a cause concert gave Jeffry Feeger that opportunity.

“It was really a historic moment for me and I think for PNG art and music, and with some of the best musicians in the country, it was a privilege,” said Feeger.

His style of painting is described as live painting or action painting – where the artist is very dramatic in their movement so it’s entertaining for people watching.

“A lot of what happens is spontaneous and there’s a lot of room for error and that’s where the magic is – when things aren’t pre-planned and anything can go wrong,” he said.

Feeger’s painting was of a woman mourning – with her face covered in mud. It’s actually cropped from an original image of the woman from one of the earthquake impacted villages hugging the Prime Minister during his visit to the area.

Feeger zooms in on the woman’s face only, to capture the emotion expressed. The details from the painting stands out, speaking its own story – another masterpiece!

But it’s the process involved to completing this piece that was a story of its own, when Feeger took his spot to one side of the stage, lost in his own world of music and paint.

And he admits this was one of the most difficult paintings he has done.

“Because it’s such a large canvas and the lighting is constantly shifting and with all that’s happening around me, and just being able to judge perspective. I actually have no time to step away from the canvas also.”

The painting was a success after almost 3 hours on stage, throughout the concert. 

“The trick is not so much about thinking, so you don’t overthink it…you just go in one-minded into your approach and complete faith in what you’re doing,” he said.

The painting will be auctioned off at an appropriate fundraiser event.

Gloria Bauai