I paint because I am driven to paint. Expression is my passion.
I create paintings to move people on several levels: intellectually
challenging and inviting; full of movement and moving; visually
stimulating and full of content.
The focus ishumanist. My drawing and my pigment sieze on the streets,
the landscapes, the skies and the lives of people observed in the
everyday, experiencing elation, satisfaction and crises.
Drawing upon themes inspired by my poetry, my creations spring from
the concept of "istoria," developed by Leon Battista Alberti: taking a
theme beyond narrative to captivate and elevate the beholder. Taking my
cue from Michelangelo's dictum,"the muscles are the ripples of the
soul," I developed a dignified visual language signaling feature,
muscle, and shadow. I compose on the golden section, running abstracted
figures against the psychology of perspective--true and splayed,
architectural and natural, interior and exterior--all pinned to a
horizon line. The temper dictates the light, and the light commands the
attention. The flow of the pigments is a metaphor for time, gravity and
I pursued art history, philosophy, the figure, and Renaissance
composition. I directed my own education, selecting a few gifted,
inspirational teachers. I thought through the end of the art history
narrative with the shift away from philosophy-driven "art about art."
Contemporary art can no longer be defined by trends, and I feel no need
to defend painting against the latest mediums.
I chose what moved me and worked until coming into my own.
Triumph of Life
Andrea Mantegna painted his "Triumphs of Caesar" in Mantua in the
1480's. Mantegna was one of the foremost antiquarians of the early
Renaissance, and the "Triumphs" are complete with classical images and
references. Mantegna portrayed Caesar and his army returning to Rome
carrying the spoils of battle and souvenirs from the cultures of the
conquered civilizations. The curators of the Royal Collection of
paintings installed the nine large (260mm x 260 mm) canvases, done in
egg tempera, at Hampton Court in 1865.
In 1994, my interest in Italian painting and the millennial mark
inspired me to use the "Triumphs" as a point of departure for a series
entitled, "Triumph of Life," portraying humanistic concepts and positive
achievment. My paintings celebrate not just survival but creativity,
intellect and love.
Certain pieces include cultural icons and artifacts of the Twentieth
Century, while others remain more abstract. I started in watercolor in
the 22 x 30 format and moved into oils on a comparable scale (30 x 40),
then to oils and watecolors on a larger scale (44 x 66). The images,
varying in scale, approach and depiction, present a range of emotions
and attitudes, all traveling forward to the next era with various
degrees of purpose, amiableness and likelihood.
My focus on figure drawing led me to portraits, which is one of
drawing's greatest challenges. Portraiture taught me oil painting.
While studying the various techniques of the masters, I developed my own
oil techniques and style. I love drawing, and the concentration
portaiture requires is an ultimate type of drawing. This level, when
meeting the challenge of automatic drawing, combines into a sublime
I have done watercolor portraits (some based on literary and artistic
greats), finished oil portraits and oil sketch-portraits (which are
accomplished in one three hour session). Portraits are sometimes
included in the group compositions. I am currently developing a new,
abstracted portrait style which emphasizes the light on the face.
Because of the requirements, the sharpness, the depth, and the reaching
into a soul, I will continue to pursue portraits.
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