I explore memory as it slips between the real and the imagined with bright, bold paintings. While my paintings are figurative, there is an abstract aspect congruous to how the reality of memories are preserved. I aim to confront and invite the viewer into my past by making large, life-like scale paintings. By choosing painting as my medium, my work visually challenges the traditionally-known archetype of memory — the photograph. My paintings providing a unique, and intensely human, touch to the interpretation of memory.
After a transformative trip to Japan in 2017, I became inspired by the graphic nature of Kabuki Theater, a classical Japanese theatre performance, and its thematic narratives of love, honor and filial obedience. Kabuki engages exaggerated movements and makeup to relive a moment in time; a memory. Similarly, I use an exaggerated palate and expressive compositions to rewrite my own memories. The colors I choose are imagined, the compositions are exaggerated.
My work is deeply rooted in my own life experience, and heavily influenced by my memory, observations, and self-identified, unconscious behaviors. My fascination is with the individual self, and the moments of turmoil and chaos that are illuminated by lucid clarity. My goal as an artist is to forge a bond between the viewer and each painting’s subject by luring them into my world with carefully selected colors, imagery and emotive tone.
My paintings open a dialogue about the strong contrast in veracity between the traditional forms of documentation; painting, portraiture, and photography, with those easily available to us with the use of current technology. Currently, we are able to document any given moment with the push of a button on a smartphone, allowing for instantaneous upload for thousands to see. We mark the moment as a memory. However, in the global era of social media and self-documentation, technology has created a visual sameness to the human experience.
My reevaluation of memories results in my strict visual signature that emphasizes heavily saturated color palettes and expressive mark making to provide a whimsical quality to otherwise mundane or dramatic events in my past. Though my paintings are steeped in dreamlike imagery, they investigate moments in time that illuminate and define self and identity.