photo by Sabrina Guitart 2010
About me & my work:
I'm a self-taught painter, inspired mainly by literature and philosophy. I find that art is not an object to be sternly defined, nor an idea swept up in estoterica to be guarded by those who can discuss it most elegantly. My works tends more towards the emotional, the temporary, nostalgia we can't quite pin point. Nearly all images are figurative, though many of the people have a whimsical air, some have medieval halos, others work at agriculture, and many have sad or tender demeanors. Many paintings have figures hinted at, tucked into the backgrounds or seams to engage the viewer and allow their minds to wander, other paintings have only a suggestion of this prompting the viewer to imagine on their own if they'd like.
I believe it is not the place of art to dictate, but to suggest, and if the suggestion displayed gathers no response this is as natural as cause and affect. It is tiring for humanity to constantly ponder what we suspect we 'ought' to be, and a well earned rest when we can finally simply be what we are.
I was born in 1985 in Richmond Virginia. Homeschooled through-out
early childhood the sense of learning at ones own pace was presented
early on. While attending public elementary, middle and highschool,
drawing, painting, and writing soaked up much of my time. These
interests were inspired by an array of motives; sheer enjoyment,
introspection, a sense of alienation, mental & emotional anguish, a
desire to question, and an anxious desperation to make sense of life.
Moving to NYC in 2003 I began to compose paintings based on personal
essays. I was less interested in expressing myself than in ideas
larger than me which I associated with and wanted to promote. This is
in large part because I found it difficult to relate to the world
around me . I began setting up paintings in the subways and handing
out questionairs with philosophical inquiries. One night while dabbing
around with black paint I found myself with a painting of a woman
which appeared without any intent, any thought or preparation.
Gradually I began to learn that much of my deliberation was a form of
defense and evasion. I gave myself up to this new style, and dark,
often wistful figures began to arise. I would show and sell these
consistently in Union Sq, and was startled by the genuine, sometimes
intense, interactions which ensued. Confidence waxed and finances
waned and so in 2004 I moved to New Orleans. There the work gained
color and movement, I supported myself by selling on the street and
got to experience a sense of community and stability. The wreckage of
the city due to the 2005 hurricane Katrina shocked my senses,
partially prompting a move back to NY. The grinding pace of NY brought about
larger scale paintings and more professional opportunities. I got back to new orleans in 2008 and got back on the fence and felt unsatisfied with my work. I hid away for a year and bussed tables and taught myself how to work with oils. I started coming back out on royal street, and now the numbers have rolled on and somehow it's 2010, and I am again comfortable in my working method, but cannot say that I'm really all that more comfortable with the world.