Eileen M Foley
Covid 19 - Climbing Toward the Light, April 2020
Oil on Canvas
36 x 48 x 1.50 in
I began this painting in mid-February. I had been following the news coming out of Italy regarding the devastation of COVID-19, and its rapid spread throughout Europe (at the time, Maine was relatively unscathed). I was looking to paint something simple, yet complex, which would capture the arduous challenge that lay ahead. I remembered this view from the bottom of the stairs at Wood Island Lighthouse in Biddeford, Maine. The viewer is looking from the base of the lighthouse up toward the light. The old hand rope winding up the twisting staircase, and its frayed tail accurately portrayed my fears of the perilous time ahead. As I worked on the painting in April, the glimmers of light on the whitewashed walls symbolized the fleeting signs of hope for a cure. The light at the end of the climb, although distant, remains within our grasp.