I paint to construct identity. How my family members speak to, look at and touch one another have determined who I am, my sexuality and how I view my body. My friends ensure my growth through their questions and support. While my paintings present a face to the world, viewing my own work deepens my self understanding.
The mouth is a major site of identification. We choose what to ingest and absorb, as well as what to say, what to present. My early experiments in identification involved rejecting some food offered by my mother. Now I understand that thinking out loud with my hands is more effective than using my mouth.
Painting in nature challenges my perceptual skills. Painting from observation is an analog means of processing my experience of the world. I am forced to stay out of my head and away from the computer. While I can only attempt to capture the rapid changes in light and atmosphere, this constant struggle is an important exercise for perceptual painting.
Naturalism can engage others. Faces invite a viewer into my perceptual space, while maintaining their own perspectives. Part of a painter’s job is to manipulate perceptual shifts in scale and depth, to construct solid illusions on flat surfaces. The lines of a labyrinth illustrate my enforced order, while “answers” remain below, obscured by layers of paint. In navigating relationships and influences I can get lost, yet here I am guaranteed a view of the bigger picture.
I live and work in Oakland, California. All paintings are for sale unless otherwise noted.