Visual perceptions fused in paint
hung on a wall, electrically illuminated.
No written or oral communication necessary.
They are visual stimulation,
a point of concentration
for those who can linger
in subtle transition
of atmosphere in quietude.
I want viewers to stop, contemplate, quietly question their perceptions, and then
interact spatially with my paintings as their appearances will change with distance.
When I was a young boy, often visiting the Cleveland Museum of Art in my home town, I was fascinated by the works of Jules Olitski and Mark Rothko, and later Agnes Martin. Standing in front of their paintings, which contained no apparent imagery, instilled in me the concept of eliciting an emotional response through patient viewing. Creating an enlightening break from our addiction to constant technological chatter and the instant manipulation of flamboyant images that we have been conditioned to crave is my artistic goal. I believe that as a society we are devolving to no longer value quiet time, quiet spaces and quiet minds—so for me, creating slow meditative and challenging visual paintings to off-set today’s fast-paced, multi-tasking, app-saturated-mobile-device society is critical.
For the past twenty years I’ve been experimenting with layering a variety of media. Using multiple application and subtraction techniques, I’ve created a unique surface experience. When viewed from a distance, my paintings have a luminous, atmospheric, soft optical effect obscuring the surface details. When the viewer approaches the canvas for closer inspection, its phosphorescent effect retreats into the surface revealing the many subtle, intricate details that comprise the whole. My gratification in painting is in the process of making—the doing of it—in which every finished work has a life and history of its own. Each layer of paint is lapped over the side of the canvas leaving a visual memory map for those who are willing to look around the edges. I see each finished painting as a metaphor for living, for as the Talking Heads questioned in their song, “Once in a Lifetime,” “Well how did I get here?”