The Gentleness of Decay


My work “The Gentleness of Decay” concerns the idea that the physical concept of decay exists as an extant form of life (fungi, bacteria, animals – without certain species of them, nothing would decay and we would simply remain, the same as some ancient plants did for thousands of years), and it had always terrified me a little. That decay was not a passive process but an active one of being consumed.

However, through my own spirituality and the path that I follow, I came to quite a sudden realization – decay itself only scares me, and most people, because it is a consumptive and painful-looking process. In truth it isn’t painful at all, as by then we’ve usually moved beyond that. Rather than being consumed, we are being laid to rest in a permanent fashion. Decay is the current natural progression, and through decay we bring life to other things.

Thus this piece was born. A bird skull now inhabited by grasses, fungi and even a little worm. While at first it seems a little horrifying, the longer you look at it, the gentler it feels – soft colours, watercolour textures, and a simpleness in the background that seems to evoke a sense of peace and belonging rather than fear and consumption. The bird is at rest. While it no longer flies, it is because of its sustenance that something, somewhere a long way down the line, gets to fly instead.

‘The Gentleness of Decay’  comments on how we as humans fear death and decay, attempting to run from it despite how it gives us so much purpose, even after we aren’t aware of it anymore.

Medium: Digital Art – Clip Studio Paint Pro

Dimensions: 3200x1800px

Paris Morgan
Bachelor of Education, Level 1 | Archive

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