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After nearly 3 decades of non-objective abstraction I’ve ventured into figurative work. My process hasn’t changed, I still use the same oversized Asian calligraphy brushes and a gestural, meditative approach. 

The image of a falling horse has been with me for some time now. So many associations; political, emotional, symbolic, even mythic. For me, there are myriad interpretations. The horse as symbol for empire, the inversion as a reference to tarot, a nod to surrealism perhaps, an anxiety triggered by the visual situation itself. We live in a time of immense cultural and political uncertainty.  The job of the artist is to speak of their time; making the personal universal, and if one is very fortunate, enduring. I think these will mean different things to different people, and I don’t think anyone would be wrong.

I found myself listening to old recordings of Delta blues in the studio.  An unexpected synergy emerged between the paintings and the music.  I think what makes the blues enduring is not just the sadness but the underlying hope.  That even the most strained and desperate voice feels the need to be heard; feels compelled to moan into the void.  

These came at a strange time. In all the years of painting I have never been blocked. I’ve never experienced the state of not knowing what to paint. When I found myself in that place this spring I kept going to the studio. I didn’t paint. I just sat there. I read, napped, and waited. Like most complex problems, if one waits long enough a solution will appear. My studio practice is an extension of my meditation practice (or is it the other way around?).  I must open myself to ideas and flow from a space of quiet repetition and lack of expectation.  

I feel these succeed when they remain loose. I’m aware of the anatomy, but choose to stay abstract and childlike in the approach and execution. I also love the brokenness of the lines and resulting figures, as extensions of broader metaphors.  

Artist Statement: Text
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