My mixed media drawings and paintings begin with preliminary collages used as sketches or references. The drawings, executed from these references, are stream of consciousness 'outtakes' from worlds depicted within the original collages, and they straddle a border between reality and dream, past life and present. The beings that continue to emerge evoke subliminal, mysterious worlds - planets of my own creation, demimondes peopled with anthropomorphic 'angels with attitude', accompanied by mutants, exhibitionists, seducers, chimeras........and other intimate strangers.
Drawing is a passion, and I intend for the work to be drawing-based, concentrating on the use of non-traditional media and arcane materials, always submitting to an obsession with obsessiveness. The mediums can vary: some are colored pencil drawings on vintage slate chalk boards, others are meditatively drawn silverpoint renderings on gessoed paper.
Yet materially, the goal is often to combine obsessive drawing with encaustic painting. Many works are mixed media paintings that incorporate my own colored pencil drawings on rice paper or hand-colored one of a kind prints with additional collage, thread, encaustic, beeswax, lace, charms, insect wings - whatever feels like inspiration.
I create human/animal hybrids who retain the physical characteristics of both. Having deciphered some of the imagery, the symbolism remains far more felt than understood, more disquieting than soothing. My hybrid creatures seem not entirely adapted to either their own environment or the human world. They are odd.
Making primitive visual myths of their secret lives, I habitually portray the features of animals who don't speak or cry out - rabbits, deer, giraffes, zebras and flying fish - as a way of emphasizing the hyperawareness that comes from listening intently, without speaking. Animals lack self-consciousness or artifice, so the animal-like figures provide a means for emotive personification, characterizing or exhibiting human motives and foibles. The external traits of the animal/human figures suggest internal ones.
As my shape-shifting creatures morph, are they 'becoming-animal' or 'becoming-human'? Which transformation would leave them better off? These human/animal archetypes - a cast of reoccuring characters - create intuitive narratives that explore themes of loss, rebirth, identity, denial, alienation, loneliness......and human vulnerability. The titles sometimes humorously call attention to and bely the seriousness of the content, the use of stereotyped or cliched phrases opens a window onto my intentions.
I especially explore and visualize the concept of 'the other'. These paintings and drawings are deliberately intimate, while containing fetishistic figures that are emotionally confrontational and exaggerated in their 'otherness'. The African and
Asian imagery are obsessions that have chosen me rather than the other way around - and in this era of globalization, that one culture and another jam into each other, is expressed in my work.
My creatures are then fitted into peculiar psychological landscapes and evolving mythological context. By depicting seductive creatures in psychedelic settings, I suggest a place that seems as yet untouched by the human species, but which evokes a flawed, human fragility nonetheless. By drawing and embroidering tattoos on the bodies, my metaphor for memory, I suggest an assimilation of culturally inscribed messages. By playing with my own fairy tales and folklore - by personalizing obsessive symbols and visual language - the work helps me process my own reactions to the real world and the actual events shaping it.