I have always been interested in abstraction and find that through non-representational form I am able to create external expressions of internal experiences. My work draws inspiration from a variety of traditions that, throughout time, have utilized archetypal forms and “power patterns” to record events and transmit significant information. Examples include ancient cave painting, Native American petroglyphs and aboriginal art whose rich use of iconic imagery was central to passing cultural stories and information along to future generations. While most of these systems of communication have been well researched and translations of each culture’s symbolic iconology exist, I do not seek out direct translations of the ancient etchings and marks that intrigue me. Instead, I choose to bear witness to the power and resonance of the imagery itself. I see each form as a vessel of information: an encapsulation of human experience and a primal reminder of our need to communicate and create connection.
The unique art-making process that I engage in is influenced by my years working as a ceramic artist. I begin my compositions by layering scraps of newsprint and found materials onto a surface of paper or wood. This adds texture and, as the piece evolves, a suggestion that the present moment is always shaped by that which has occurred in the past.
My first mark is a single archetypal form, usually a circle, the symbol of continuity and completion. I draw the shape onto my surface, or etch it into wet paint. And then I replicate the form, in various sizes, multiple times. As lines intersect and overlap, new shapes emerge. I tease them to the surface and give them room to breathe. I highlight specific forms with color and work to accentuate relationships that feel essential. There are choices to make and a good deal of what I have created usually disappears as I apply new layers of paint. The resulting compositions are richly layered and the interplay of color, line and form can be very complex. Yet for me, the work generates a sense of peace as I am certain that at the core of the complexity is a single, subtle form that is boundless and absolute.
I received my MFA in ceramics from the California College of the Arts where I studied with Viola Frey. I went on to explore cast bronze. I now work primarily with acrylics and combined materials on paper and wood panel.