I am interested in imperfection, growth and decay, improvisation, and chance, as concrete attributes of vitality. I understand my impulse to manifest these qualities in my work as a sort of resistance to the generic, impersonal perfection and mundane predictability of the machine/information age. I do not depict particular living things – instead, I seek to incorporate the deeper, universal qualities of the living – the cracks, the roughness, the emotion, and the spontaneity of the real. At least, this is how I have come to understand my current work, which has developed intuitively and experimentally toward the expressionist, the raw, the visceral, the fractured, and the primal.
I use explosive gesture, forceful mark-making, sculptural textures, emotive color harmonies, and a variety of experimental and traditional media to manifest this vital, primal force. I prefer working on raw supports – raw canvas, raw wood, raw board – and leaving passages of the support exposed. This practice allows me to create a kind of literal depth in my work that does not rely on traditional illusionary techniques. The unprimed surface allows me to build up the painting from subdued, stained passages and sketchy, broken lines toward bolder, more saturated, impasto marks that sit on top of the stained, sketchy initial layers. And, leaving passages of raw support exposed further undermines the conventional illusionary construct of painting, in favor of open materiality.
This is fitting because my work is not about illusion. I am not interested in manufacturing the sensation of three-dimensional form on a two-dimensional surface, much less organizing the composition around a shiny “focal point” and, then, directing the viewer’s eye in tidy, pleasant trajectories around the canvas. I want a brutal mess, a field of visual information that grips you and reveals its subtle harmonies and grounding weight only after the shock of the primal scream begins to fade.
My process is supra-intellectual, improvisational, physical, and charged. It is also highly focused and intentional, as I seek out a certain order, intelligence, and interdependency amid the organic chaos. This tension between the animalistic and the structured is intentional. Amid the tempestuous, fractured tumult of reality, there is a lurking order and interdependency – a logic, even. In this place between the unpredictable torrent of existence and the law-bound, predictable properties of reality lies a fundamental mystery that I am exploring and expressing in my work. As in reality, so in my work: without some order and intent, there is meaningless chaos; without spontaneity, imperfection, and emotion, there is meaningless order.