Highlands & Islands

Sir David Attenborough praise for Scots surrealist's art

Michael Forbes painting Image copyright Michael Forbes
Image caption Sir David Attenborough has written to Michael Forbes praising his new painting
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A Scottish artist has portrayed a quote by TV presenter and conservationist Sir David Attenborough in a new painting.

Easter Ross-based pop surrealist Michael Forbes was working when he heard the broadcaster and conservationist say on TV: "Every breath of air we take, every mouthful of food we eat, depends upon a healthy natural world."

He created a painting of a figure in a space suit, clutching a giant bee and wearing a support pack fashioned from flowers.

Forbes said: "I felt this was exactly the message of my painting showing a future member of the human race living on Earth and forced to wear a space suit as the environment is so hostile to life."

He added: "I guess with the retro space suit I was subconsciously thinking about the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing and how the moon is so close to use and barren and void of life, yet here we are with a world of living wonder but unable to fully appreciate it."

Sir David has seen Forbes' new artwork and written to the artist thanking him for a painting that "so eloquently and aptly puts an image to my words".

Michael Forbes' painting Huntress Image copyright Michael Forbes
Image caption Forbes other work references women's rights and Hollywood glamour
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Forbes' previous work has referenced women's rights campaigns, featured "mash ups" of glamorous Hollywood icons and also past US presidents such as Barack Obama and Abraham Lincoln.

His fans include the singer Madonna, comedian and actor Ricky Gervais and film-maker and former Monty Python Terry Gilliam.

Early on in his career, Forbes was an apprentice of the late Pop artist and acclaimed sculptor Gerald Laing, who was a close friend of artists Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein,

Newcastle-upon-Tyne-born Laing set up a family home in Kinkell Castle on the Black Isle, not far from where Forbes grew up near Dingwall.

Image copyright of Michael Forbes.

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