I paint because painting takes me on a ride. I get to explore my inside story (-ies) while ostensibly using tools from the material world. For me, there’s no better way to spend my time. In conversation with others, I am often quiet, allowing them to dominate. In the studio, however, the conversation is a visual excursion through my own thought and emotion. It’s a lot of emotion: frustration, doubt, curiosity—usually accompanied by fear and insecurity. It’s a wild, often uncomfortable, ride.
I work in silence—except for what’s going on in my head. I respect silence. Visually and intellectually, it’s a juicy space. It’s active, not passive, in my estimation. Out of silence comes real insight, real connection. Silence shows me what is obvious about my work: that it mines the richness of color, that color and texture speak with one voice in my paintings, and that shape and composition drive the structure of my work. I always try to correlate what is happening in my paintings to what is happening in my life. My paintings confirm that silence, which I treasure, is not empty. Rather, it is replete with pre-verbal knowing and its own, internal architecture.
There have been many artists who have influenced my work, from Hieronymous Bosch and Pieter Bruegel to Romare Bearden and Agnes Martin. These are artists whose content and, sometimes, technique, has helped me understand space: what it offers and how I want to interact with it visually. But at the heart of my daily practice is an affinity with the soulful struggles of people like Van Gogh, who is presumed by psychiatry to have been bipolar. He is someone from whom one learns to work with one's own mind and emotions, stay with them, and cultivate their complexities.