This current body of work, both paintings and sculptures, has evolved out of my daily walks through the forest preserve near my home paired with a commute to my studio practice in the city. The fresco paintings and tree sculptures attempt to speak to the merging of nature with contemporary culture. This is a message which mimics the early fresco prehistoric cave paintings in both material and form. Working on the fresco paintings with pigment, ink, tea, charcoal and wax a fantasy time line evolves as contemporary imagery is married to primitive mark making. The irregularity of the plaster surface, with its cracks and divots, lends itself to the individuality of each piece with a reference to the infinite possibilities of interpreting shared experiences.
In recent paintings the bird imagery speaks to universal and contemporary questions regarding migration, shelter (nesting) and homelessness along with the ideas of beauty and adaptability. I believe Emily Dickinson expressed it best in her poem “Hope is the Thing with Feathers”:
“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard,
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm,
I’ve heard it on the chilliest land,
And the strangest sea;
Yet never in extremity
It asked a crumb of me”
Over the past several years there has been a natural evolution in my studio from the building of a fresco painting to assembling tree sculptures in hopes to further highlight how culture and nature have merged. Using found objects, such as broken tree branches, wire, Styrofoam, clay, paper and studio rags to name a few, each piece is reflective of natures beauty and adaptability; what once was, what could be.