I am an artist who, through my drawings, paintings, and photographs seeks to express thoughts and feelings that lie beneath the familiar reality of our everyday experience. Mood, symbol, and a sense of place figure heavily in these dream-like, strongly narrative images, rendered with strict precision and attention to detail. In choosing to work mono-chromatically, weather with brush or film, my work finds its commonality in the color black which is itself symbolic. With its myriad associations of night, dreams, mystery, death, the past, and the unconscious, this “prince of colors” is supremely evocative.
The nude human form (sometimes accompanied by animals or objects) is unquestionably central to this theme. In these colorless imaginary worlds, the body, when placed before a backdrop of gloom becomes the perfect metaphor. How might we measure ourselves against this ever-present unknown? How great is the difference between the intimacies of what is revealed and the uncertainties of what remains unseen? Here, in the presence of such darkness the most paltry light feels spiritual, reassuring; even as it exposes our human vulnerabilities, our hidden animal characteristics and experience is distilled to a single moment in which the self is pictured as eternal.
To describe such inner states I rely, for the most part, on a reductive rub-out technique that allows me to work transparently. With a single paint color there is no mixing of pigments and no layered build-up, and unlike the typical oil painting (where the thickest paint is most often seen in the highest lights), the white is merely the ground showing through – like the paper in a watercolor snow scene. By stripping away color from my imagery, light then becoming isolated to its purest form -- as tone rather than as temperature. In this way (through the use of black and white tonal shifts), I am afforded the greatest latitude in emphasizing the dramatic interplay of light and shadow. I think of the end result as a kind of “painted drawing.”