wood & fiberglass screen
Our lived environments often go unnoticed. Whether it's our immediate built habitats or our greater ecological context, we rarely consider our tangible relationships with our material surroundings. Why do we blindly pass through our spaces with little thought as to our connection to them? Why do we commodify our environments, seldom extending ourselves into a relationship even if only by the simple act of dedicated observation? I choose to create site specific installations because sculpture has the unique ability to mediate that experiential relationship. The multi-layered moire effects and the shifting planes bring a new dynamic to the angles and atmosphere of the space, while the lightly-hanging monoliths cause pause, welcoming us into deeper perception of our immediate surroundings.
Studies in Yellow
oil on canvas
These paintings, all self portraits, are fast impressions of color and light on the only readily available model I had, myself. I chose not to finish the pieces, but instead to focus on putting down quick and decisive marks, studying color and energy as much as mood and likeness. The challenge of this small series was in arranging interesting compositions and different color schemes within the given constraints of canvas size, model, cloth, and palette.
Julia I; Julia II (portrait of artist's sister)
People have always captivated me. When I was 10 I was busy coloring humanoid drawings of my stuffed animals. Under my high school art teacher, I learned to divide faces up into cubist shapes, seeing the face not so much as just a pair of eyes, nose, and mouth, but as a patchwork quilt of shapes fitting into each other. My experiments with the figure to this point have almost always been reduced to a two-dimensional plane in drawing or painting, although for years I have felt this yearning to work three-dimensionally in the round.
When I began Stone Carving this semester with professor Zingarelli I hoped I would have the chance to experiment with the figure in sculpture, but I never anticipated how much I would love it. While completing Julia I I spent many late nights in Barrington, feeling more fulfilled in my art than I have in years (despite the sleep deprivation). Each time I worked on the stone was utter joy - discovering the curve of an eyelid, the dimple of the corner of the cheek, the structure of a forehead.
The first piece, Julia I, was made without serious study into anatomy or master sculptures - I was striking out into the unknown, and I enjoyed the raw discovery of it all. With the experience I had gained working on Julia I, I approached the second piece, Julia II, more traditionally. I studied the proportions of my sister's face using reference photos, learned the anatomy of the human skull, frequently drawing the shape of the bones on the stone I worked, and investigated the works of other sculptors for techniques, form, and rhythm of shadow and light.
This experience in figural sculpture has both been the culmination of many years of study and longing, and also the initiation of a new chapter in my artistic process. I sincerely hope you enjoy experiencing these pieces as much as I did creating them.
Soli Deo Gloria.
pen & ink on paper
This drawing is based off of sculptures by the Djenne people of Mali from the 13th to 15th centuries. On a recent trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art I was able to see one of these sculptures in person and I found myself identifying with it in an unexpected way - as a representation of "me in class."
Before I came to Gordon, I always heard that one of the stereotypes of college students is a constant lack of sleep. Now, as a first year college student, I have found this "stereotype" to be true and was inspired by these sculptures to create a drawing which speaks to this. While the sculptures exhibit positions of sleep or rest, I have stacked them and turned them into a "sleep totem," a layered representation of the exhaustion inherent to the college life.
woodcut, handmade paper, shopping bag
What I know about the child I sponsor is relatively vague, mainly facts about her family and where she lives in short letters I receive every few months. The business side of automatic withdrawals from my bank account seems to contradict the bizarre intimacy of providing for someone I've never met before. I wanted to reach past the transactional necessities and connect with the person on the other side of this relationship, or at least the idea of her. By working with the only image I have of her, a small photograph, I wanted to explore our lovely bond, peculiar bond, acknowledging the brokenness that necessitates physical provision as well as the hope for her future I pray over.
variety of makeup, graphite, color pencil on paper
I have lost many beloved people recently and they have left a vacant space in my memories and everything we owned together.
How can their presence ever be replaced when we are here separated by a great chasm from our beloved ones? I miss my people terribly, but they have crossed over to eternity and are on their journey home.
Take from this piece for I give it freely; think about your loved ones and those who had gone before.
Life has already made it his far for you; don't ever forget what journey you are on.
Sacred Object #3
acrylic, ink, & pencil on canvas
Art is sacred. It allows me to communicate with the world and explore myself in ways that I would otherwise be unable to. I let the creation of this piece become a ritual driven by my creative process. I let my brush land wherever it wanted and let the piece move in whatever direction it began to.
An integral part of this work is the process itself and how it is shown within the finished product. Recently, overlapping images and colors have become a large influence in my work. I regularly find myself studying and drawing plant life, sacred imagery, geometric designs, and visual icons.
The colors exhibited here are precious to me, I use them frequently and mix them carefully to find my own voice in color. In this piece, I have used images, designs, patterns, and colors that are sacred to me to visually create the environment in which my subconscious often exists.