Statement


I believe wholeheartedly in the process of image making with paint. I do not hold back when it comes to color, bring it on I say. If I could bathe in pools of color, I would do so and not apologize to anyone for what might appear as impulsiveness, bad-taste or a certain kind of crazy. The abrupt juxtaposition of patterns, elaboration of motifs, repetition of forms, the playfulness of humor and always that “shadowy body stuff” or residue of depression are the grand motivators in each work as they progress from one to the other or from project to project.
The themes vary according to my interests. Often, they are generated by books I am reading or some area of research on material culture. Lately, my paintings and drawings focus on the socio-economic background of early mass-produced decorative objects such as 19th century English Staffordshire figurines and French porcelain dolls. These remnants of material culture are fragile things, easily broken by accident or from emotions of desire, fear or anger. They evoke the aura of kitsch and seem both beautiful and completely useless. The Staffordshire figures with their fanciful, folk- art quality and expressionless features hides the underlying violent and sexual nature of the subject matter and the conditions in which they were manufactured, reflecting the contradiction between appearances and use value. The French dolls seem to beckon like the sirens in The Odyssey with their large, cold, glass eyes and kid leather bodies. These dolls oscillate between worn out visages of children and coquettish women fashion models. Both objects function within the realm of a magical thinking process in which they act out narratives of otherness and the uncanny.
The series of works that have evolved utilize a maximalist exaggeration with explosive and randomly applied bursts of color, a plethora of enlarged eyes staring out, patterns and linear movement that act in opposition to surface and form. These images include bulging shapes and enormous black bubbles spewing from orifices and the tops of heads signifying thought or speech.
After many drawings of these seductive objects, I have developed a clearly defined visual language. While focusing on past material culture, the paintings allow me to bring color to life in a way that is immediate and intuitive, full of humor and playfulness, yet unnerving and reflective of our own political and social troubles.