Henley’s work communicates the transience of organic matter, animals, and bone, in a constant state of metamorphosis. These mortal shells, remnants of life, are hand-drawn by the artist with an acute obsession, using the medium of pencil and liquid gold leaf paint onto cartridge paper. Some of the images are layered using tracing paper and others have been developed into 3-D works.
Henley mainly works from primary images and objects he has sourced online; a miscellaneous collection of human skulls, fungi, Rhino beetles, the pelvis bone of a rabbit, and jellyfish are among other things to be viewed here. All of which are seductively transformed, as is the viewers’ perception, from objects of decay into something beautiful - a liminal state between life and death. He begins each piece by mathematically drawing a set network, before placing each fragment of the images using an internal set of algorithms and rules that he applies to each element of his work, dictating where each piece is positioned; each piece separate and yet, connected as an indivisible whole. His microcosmic sections consist of immeasurable complexity, where the mathematical pursuit of the artist produces something organic petalled onto the skin of the paper.
The habit of viewing things with a visible beginning and end; the entrance and departure from this world, is disrupted in Henley’s work as the chosen objects he draws from are dissected and re-imagined to produce a new way of seeing them. Through a method of distortion, each piece possesses limitless and diverging entry and exit points that the eye can navigate. Rather than imposing a set of laws, Henley creates a space for the viewer to freely interact and interpret the images he or she sees in them; beyond the logic of A-B his work is a canvas for the imagination to infinitely play out.