Laocoön, latex paint on canvas, 72 x 36", 2021
The Trojan priest Laocoön, in his last moments, attempted to warn the Trojan people of their terrible mistake. The cunning Greek commander Odysseus had hatched the plan that would come to be known as the Trojan Horse - a supposed offering to the gods concealing hidden Greek soldiers. Laocoön, sensing treachery, had tried to convince the people to destroy the horse, but they feared angering the gods.
Perhaps due to this interference, or perhaps other earlier transgressions, the gods brought forth serpents from the nearby sea. The beasts attacked the unlucky priest and his two sons, devouring them all. The Greek plan succeeded and Troy was lost.
The theme of Laocoön and the serpents has always been one of my favorite themes. From the iconic marble Laocoön Group to the almost surreal Laocoön of El Greco, the theme provides an opportunity for a powerful figure to push and fight against a writhing adversary - man versus beast, man versus the anger of his gods, and man versus his own mortal decisions.