“Wu Zetian” belongs to “The Empresses”, a series of five glorious prints carefully composed of butterfly wings that create a kaleidoscope effect and are placed on a flaming red background. Each work has been carefully screen printed with glitter coat which offers that gleaming effect on them. Each Empress from this series is named after five exceptionally influential female rulers: Wu Zetian (624-705), Nūr Jahān (1577-1645), Theodora (c. 490-548), Suiko (554-628) and Taytu Betul (1851-1918). Their characters and stories are enhanced by the dominant red tone of the series, which deals with themes such as life, war, power, anger, love, joy and luck.
Rife with symbolism and with a six-point star composition at its centre, Wu Zetian is named for the ruthless yet successful Chinese ruler. In 655 CE Wu Zetian (624-705 CE) married Emperor Gaozong and became empress, much to the dismay of many statesmen who she soon eliminated in an infamous reign of terror that she maintained over the innermost circles of government. Despite the politics and violence within, Wu Zetian proved to be a competent leader, creating stability and consolidating the Tang Dynasty at a time when it appeared to be crumbling.
“I just made these 5 mega red glitter prints! I thought the idea was good but seeing them now, real, they feel like they are unlocking the unfathomable mysteries of the universe. I don’t know why they are so good but they are... They feel powerful and important. I called them “The Empresses” and named them after five famous female rulers (...) I love art and it’s uplifting qualities and how can these not make you feel good? I love it when an idea explodes and becomes more than the sum of its parts.„