Artist's Statement

Much of my work explores the line, color, and texture that occur in the natural world. The forms we see and their proportions speak to us in a mathematical language which appeals on a primitive, instinctual level as much as on a more sophisticated cognitive one. A realistic depiction allows the artist to let the subject matter speak for itself. It also reminds the viewer to notice natural beauty everywhere one looks. All the works on this site explore the order imposed by life on the material world and its inevitable disintegration over time.

Terra Nova

The delicate patterns of cracks in the sidewalk were the inspiration for the series Terra Nova. The paintings are life-sized pictures of portions of sidewalk. In the cracks in the concrete and the holes in the dead leaves we see moments in the process of decay. Decay is the essential process in transforming dead matter into new life. This gap is perhaps the greatest and least understood of all. The natural process of entropy is seen in once living matter and in inorganic concrete, emphasizing their entanglement. The synthetic order shaped by human hands is also digested by time into raw material.
I recreated the concrete texture of the sidewalk by mixing sand into the gesso, and by using small dots of different colored paint to depict the particles making up the concrete. The leaves are painted in a more traditional manner with multiple layers of glossy oil paint to provide a contrast to the rough background.

Threadbare

I started Threadbare as a series of paintings to explore the intrinsic qualities of the medium. Rather than concentrate on the qualities of paint, as others have done, I chose to focus this theme on the qualities of the linen canvas.
The initial paintings depict linen shirts hanging on a clothesline. They are drapery studies without a body, though a trace of the human form remains in the structure of the clothing. Only white paint was used, suggesting underpainting. The canvas was not primed so it could be appreciated in its raw form. To emphasize the texture of the weave, I removed some threads from the woof and pulled others into an undulating pattern. I also embroidered areas of the canvas. The later paintings are more traditional drapery studies. Though invisible, the female form is suggested by the folds of drapery.
Canvas captures the fluid paint and creative action of the artist into a stable material form. It is the yin component of a painting, defining its shape, size, and texture. The feminine theme is evident on every level. Traditional aspects of "women's work"—weaving, laundry, and embroidery—recur throughout the series. The result is a symphony in negative space and an intimate study of the very fabric of a painting.

Arboretum

The paintings Beech, Boston Common and Birch, Arnold Arboretum show details of trees enlarged to four square feet. In this macroscopic view of the tree's anatomy can be seen splits in the bark and elephantine folds where roots and branches come together. Also prominent are several knot holes and large grooves where major portions of the tree were once lost. These different kinds of crevices are a living record of the growth process. What were once ugly wounds have now become graceful formations of healthy tissue, demonstrating life's miraculous ability to heal itself, and to transform trauma into beauty.
The large scale of the paintings allows the subject, though still identifiable, to disintegrate into its component parts. The lines of the paintings are free to make up their own shapes, much like the clouds in the sky may be seen to resemble various surprising objects. I used black and burnt umber oil sticks to create the lines and dark tones in the painting. The thick paint caught on the rough surface of the canvas, allowing the color washes underneath to peek through and imbue the image with light and color.

Drawings

The series of drawings depicts plants which have died at the zenith of the life cycle. The dessicated remains of their reproductive bodies are vividly drawn in pencil just as they have been allowed to wither on the stem, with life’s promise of renewal forever unfulfilled.