My work deals with the relationships between the idea of a place, color, and implied narrative. The landscapes I paint evoke memories and feelings of an actual location through the combination of these elements, but the places remain unidentified and details are altered. I’m interested in how far removed a viewer can be from the physical site but still be able to grasp the integral essence of the place. My paintings are typically inspired by personal photographs and memories, and are never completed on site.
Recently my work takes this process of removal even farther. A current series is inspired by the dioramas at a museum, with the actual terrain being filtered through five layers of process. Only then is the viewer asked to connect with the location on an emotional rather than a tangible, physical level. What is lost and what is gained?
The challenge as both an educator and artist is balancing projects and time, and recently my workload has skewed heavily toward educator-based projects. Fortunately I do have the lure of an interesting new series to bring me back to painting.
As an artist I am interested in the “idea of place”, and how far removed you can be from a physical site and still retain or capture the integral essence of the place. I am currently working on landscapes inspired by the dioramas at a museum, which are created from several steps of removal: the original place –> the museum artists’ renditions –> the diorama at the museum –> my sketches of the diorama + photographs —> my painting.
What is gained and what is lost?
I’ve always been interested in the “idea” of a place, and the associations or relationships people attach to it. I have a new idea for a series of paintings, which I’ll fully flesh out in a subsequent post, but for now I need something: You.
Tell me about your favorite place without telling me the name of the location.