Gregory Ferrand, It IS You (and Me Too), 2017

A content couple embraces as they watch the fireworks in the background, but at the front of the carnival shooting gallery, things aren’t quite as comfortable. A family cackles as they watch children snipe away at the targets off set. Those kids seem to be enjoying themselves too much.

On the left half we see another family comprised of mother, father, and son (at least, we assume that that is their son as he resembles them both). The father looks dejected as he lowers his gun. Does this carnival game provoke his PTSD and bring back memories of his time in the war? Or maybe he feels like an inadequate protector of his family? His wife clings to him with a worried face.

Like much of Ferrand’s work, there is turmoil bubbling just under the shiny exterior of suburban life. He writes “I paint a narrative based on emotion and abstract ideas and fill it with ‘bread crumbs’ that give direction (but no definitive explanations) to the viewer, who constructs their own story pulled from their own life experience and what is meaningful to them.”

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