Reflections Of Power has emerged through feelings of personal connection with the paintings of Francisco Goya, the writings of Nicole Krauss, and the palpable qualities of paint. This series of paintings initially developed as a reaction to reading Man Walks Into a Room by Nicole Krauss. A novel set in 1957, and the present day, it’s a meditation on memory and personal history, solitude and intimacy. It tells the story of a young and popular professor at Columbia University, Samson, who is found wandering in the Nevada desert with no memory of his previous life.When his wife is with him in Los Angeles, while he is being tested by a doctor and his team to determine if they can extract one his memories, she holds out hope that he will eventually remember her. After another patient’s memory is extracted, Samson agrees to be the first subject to have a memory transferred into his brain. This moment has continued to stick with me.
Man Walks Into a Room had me wondering how much I have forgotten of my own life and what could be different if I remembered. As I began to figure out my creative process of transferring these thoughts to canvas, I created my own team of doctors: the watchers. These are the figures who spectate from the lower parts of the Reflections Of Power paintings. The watchers prod and extract memories of moments I've forgotten, bringing them to the forefront of my mind to be discovered and recovered
The very materiality of paint consumes me. I love the sound of pigment and wax being slapped onto the canvas. I apply the paint with anything I can get my hands on: brushes, palette knives, syringes, and Q-tips. All of these serve as tools for a diverse mark-making. Through scraping and adding, and repeating, I continuously work and rework the surface. The figures emerge, and at times spill over the edge of the canvas, allowing them to come in contact with the world beyond the painting, unrestricted. Accidental spills creating boundless forms; this is what I love about painting. With each work brought from conception to completion, I am compelled to experience love’s conclusion and after effects. The process allows me to fall in love over and over again. As with love itself, sometimes a sensitive and delicate touch is required. Yet othertimes they need to become abrasive and cruel. So one must come to know when to allow what is murky, or dubious in nature, to be vivid in its own right. At other times, the paint must work like frosting on a cake, sweet and concealing that which is substantial. In that near concealment it becomes substantial itself. Still yet, there are times when the work must delve into grotesque distortions and excesses.
My visual inspiration is influenced by Francisco Goya’s series, Images of Women. I am drawn to Goya’s multifaceted world of women, how he depicts women and relates to them. Francisco Calvo Serraller of Madrid’s Prado Museum said of Goya, "Woman is goddess and witch for Goya, sinner and saint, lover and procurer, worker and aristocrat." My work reflects the women Goya painted and focuses on the role they played in the original paintings. Although my figures demand the attention and admiration of the viewer rather than being polite and academic societal studies of art. Facets of my life inspire my paintings, much like Goya’s did. These portraits of the women of my past command a wide range of feeling and observation that compel the viewer to examine the encompassing satire and criticism of a relationship.
All of these factors allow me to thoughtfully paint particular moments in life and the women I shared them with, why I hate... love, that nervousness and anxiety of what may or not be. I took these very complex and human emotional ideas and memories I've reclaimed over time, all the while never losing my grip on present moments and emotions, and forcefully squeezed them onto a surface and immortalized them. Reflections of Power is an ephemeral experience of being human and the realization that we create a lifetime of memories that fade and are replaced with newer ones.