At first read my paintings are dramas enacted by a cast of invented animal characters.
I use the conventions of narrative, i.e. characters as dramatis personae, yet I am not telling a story per se. Instead I use a combination of literary, cinematic, and painter's forms to express various states of mind.
The characters often represent conflicting forces. My intention is to document them, whether crude, error ridden, addled, gentle, or violent. The psychological terrain is made visual through the relationship of these characters to each other and to their worlds: a combination of fantastic unreality and naturalism. The pictorial space they inhabit is sometimes claustrophobic and tense, and at other times filled with light and air.
Works on Paper:
I was walking in northern Mexico, through an abandoned construction site: half built bunker-like modern apartments, the concrete already crumbling. As I walked through the rubble my foot touched something soft. I looked down. It was a dog, half burned and covered in dust. I looked up and realized that there were dozens of half-burnt dogs scattered around. I found out later that people would come there and set fire to them and then leave. Soon the desert wind would come up and blow them out.
I have always been struck by how suddenly the familiar ceases to be so. I find that working with collage replicates these moments of estrangement. The process is spooky. Beginning with a found scrap or mark offers so many possible paths. With each addition the direction shifts and I must respond to a new language that I can somehow speak. I see things I did not know existed.