Drawing from the history of pattern, the contemporary field of interior design, the garden space, and cultural associations of nature, my work attempts to question how pattern can function as a visual language. I am drawn to floral patterns mostly because they are found universally throughout all cultures and communicates on an ideal. Throughout the centuries, we repeatedly look to reference these natural and organic forms, either through direct representation, stylization or abstraction. Perhaps it is why today, while we generally feel a separation from nature in our contemporary lifestyles, our response is to bring these natural forms into our interior environments through decoration. In doing so we attempt to domesticate nature in an ideal form.
In my recent series I paint directly on tablecloths, the patterns are a predetermined commercialized image that I personally respond to, which is both challenging and liberating. My paints are mostly premade colors from swatch brochures bought at a local hardware store. In order to extract meaning from this process, my impulse is to paint, imitate, appropriate and reference through the hand. The hand is the only individual gesture that identifies oneself as unique. I am a painter and think through the act of painting. I also contemplate how it is natural for me to turn to paint to express myself. However, even through the process of making marks on my canvas, I am constantly repeating, imitating and copying from visual sources around me.
Acrylic, mixed media on cotton tablecloth, 70" x 179 cm, 2011
Acrylic, mixed media on cotton tablecloth, 60"x82", 2011
Acrylic on cotton tablecloth, 70" x 179 cm, 2011
Portrait of Damask
Acrylic on canvas, 49"x71", 2011
Acrylic, mixed media on cotton tablecloth, 60"x92", 2011
2010 Window Series
Drawing from the history of pattern, the contemporary field of interior design, the garden space, and cultural associations of nature, my work attempts to question how pattern can function as a visual language. We look to nature for inspiration as well as recognizing nature as a metaphor of a divine organizational system in which we recognize our roles within its design. Nature is the construct of culture and in examining the historical roots of where these ideas originate reveals how certain ideologies about nature are still with us today. Pattern then is an important visual strategy for reflecting these ideologies because so much of patterned designs throughout the centuries directly reference natural and organic forms, either through direct representation, stylization or abstraction. Pattern then becomes an important visual strategy in understanding the constant negotiation between culture and nature, and also to extract meaning from our contemporary lifestyle, where we generally feel a separation from nature. Our response is to bring these natural forms into our interior environments through decoration, and through this action, we attempt to domesticate nature in an ideal form.
In this series, I play with the concept of "windows," where so many of us today admire nature from behind a window. The patterned elements represent the "interior" space that is structured and stylized by forms directly sourced from nature. The outside space loosely is represented by the freedom and organic nature of paint.
Construct I (Windows Series)
Acrylic, paper on panel, 50"x37", 2010
Construct II (Windows Series)
Acrylic, mixed media, screenprint on panel, 56"x42", 2010
Construct III (Window Series)
Acrylic, mixed media on canvas, 36x36, 2010
Construct IV (Window Series)
Acrylic, mixed media on paper (3 panels), 18x56, 2010
Acrylic, mixed media on panel, 24x54, 2010
Acrylic, paper on panel, 42x48 (2 panels), 2010
What Do I See (a)
Acrylic, mixed media on panel, 11x18, 2010
What Do I see (b)
Acrylic, found paper on panel, 24x18, 2010
Acrylic, ink on panel (2 panels), 18x36, 2010
Acrylic on canvas, 36x36, 2009
Acrylic on panel, 20x16, 2009
Acrylic on panel, 20x16, 2009
Acrylic on panel (2 panels), 32x12, 2009
Acrylic, oil on canvas, 24x18, 2009
2008 Alexandria Series
I am interested in reinterpreting the landscape of painting through the eyes of formal abstraction infused with elements drawn from the graphic design aesthetic. This balance between control and spontaneity, formality and casual application, is something that pervades my work. My recent work explores this basic framework through the use of color and color fields that are utilized as an alternate tool to “trap” the gestural strokes, theoretically controlling the amount of energy released on the canvas. The palpable tension between these painted organic forms are contrasted with color, cut vinyl and drawing that allow a transition into a collage-type of process, reminiscent of design programs on the computer. This process is immediate, therefore creating an environment where decisions are made in the moment.