The gorilla paintings came to be a quest to investigate what is it to be human. It is the very first series of paintings, that I still continue today. At first I became curious about how the large apes communicate, form family units, how and when they feel certain emotions. Gorillas share almost 99% of their genetic makeup with humans, and in general are a great reminder to ourselves of what it is to be human. This is when I wanted to experiment with people’s reactions to what is known to be an only human domain of activity – making art, and painting a self-portrait. To see a gorilla’s self-portrait painted as an artist, or a portrait painted ‘playing’ a human role – of a cardinal or a cavalier – creates a certain stir in my audience, and I am interested in explore this stir of emotions in us – a certain uncanny feeling seeing what is considered a beast occupying our realms. Also jolly to look at, I am attempting to stay away from caricature.