I painted this late at night, during the year of my first job (at the Commonwealth Bank – Australia). I still have it. I would never part with it. The term “workplace bullying” did not exist then. But that was my daily status, being constantly harassed and put down by a number of employees at the bank. Including the bank manager. His name was Mr Withers, and he did just that. Made me wither at the sight of him. I could do nothing right in his eyes. I was a very young 17, and green behind the gills. Barely any social skills. And the bullies can smell that a mile away.

I didn’t realise it at the time, but this painting was of me. Foetal and beaten down. But painting it, and looking at it each night where it hung on the wall at the end of my bed, was my comfort. I woke to it each morning. And went to bed with it at night. And dreaded the next day at work, each time (enamels on particle board – 3′ x 2′). Bullies. Damn them all.

click on image to enlarge

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