Beau White's new hyperrealist paintings look at the creepy creatures that will outlive us

© Beau White - "Fruits of Labour" - oil on canvas. All images courtesy of the artist and gallery

What will be left behind after the apocalypse? Will any life remain? Australian artist Beau White's new oil paintings give us a glimpse of the creatures that will prevail once we're gone.

Called Only Human, the series features hyperrealist artworks and sculptures of Tardigrades, also known as 'water bears' or 'moss piglets', which are water-dwelling eight-legged segmented micro-animals. Not exactly the prettiest things to observe under a microscope.

They were recently on show at the Beinart Gallery in Brunswick, which said: "In the face of the looming environmental apocalypse, Only Human humorously explores humanity's frail and transient place in an ecosystem where some of the most seemingly inconsequential creatures are the most resilient."

As humans, we have sought to tame and subjugate nature, creating sterile barriers and differentiating ourselves as "master" of the natural world. But will that always be the case? Nature is likely to outlive us, as we continue to make the planet uninhabitable for ourselves.

White's portraits of Tardigrades inflate this almost indestructible species to the status of deities, invisible in daily life, but destined to survive and thrive in a post-human world.

© Beau White - "Washed Up” - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Washed Up” - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Cosmic Debris" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Cosmic Debris" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Roast Me" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Roast Me" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Immaculate Confection" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "Immaculate Confection" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" - oil on canvas

© Beau White - "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" - oil on canvas