As a figurative painter, I create work about the body. But my overriding interest lies in the relationship between mind, body, and landscape. For a show on the grounds of what had been a private club in LA, I painted laborers on red vinyl and installed them throughout the property.
Last fall, I traveled to West Texas, gauging the impact of the oil market crash on the state’s Permian Basin region, where I had previously spent time painting the industrial landscape. Intervention renders an illustration from the children’s book Alice in Bibleland (a Texas thrift store find) stacked in between the stratigraphic layers of an oil field. Limiting my palette to ready-mixed hues from hardware stores, I developed a strong affinity with the surreal and minimalist art of John Wesley.
Trapped in New York City during the pandemic, I made paintings about Zoom meetings, my insomnia, and the McDonald’s outside my window. I painted emojis, increasingly aware of their constant presence in our social and emotional lives. These signs and symbols are a visual language with significance, meaning, and double meaning. In Leda and the Swan, I combine them with art historical references and Greek mythology, playing with context and combining “high” and “low”.
Paintings from 2018 look at the oil and gas industry but in watercolor. They reflect my subjective experience of looking at a landscape and a region that I love. Not far from the oil fields of the Permian, my great-grandfather pieced together a ranch for grazing his cattle. In my New York studio, I laid large sheets of canvas and paper down on the floor and painted from above. Rather than depicting the horizontality of the landscape, I layered and stacked images, showing a sense of time going down deep like roots.