Q. What is the primary motivation behind your work?
A. The primary motivation is to create a place where there is a sense of resolve-of transformation and ultimately, healing. The motivation that drives me is the desire to heal, to awaken. My process is a direct reflection and active meditation on the simultaneity of accepting something totally as it is, while allowing it to become its ultimate nature. I participate in my painting the way I imagine an alchemist would turn base metal into gold-there is magic and there is also science. Both being essential aspects and tools for living today. My painting teaches me and in turn, embodies constant discovery of self, of spirit, of love.
Q. How would you describe your creative impulse?
A. My creative impulse is about trusting the intellect of my intuition. The intuition is something inherent, something truly of our primary nature as animals. I feel that I allow this knowingness to guide me through my creative process without thought, without judgment-I feel and move as if dancing to a rhythm. This rhythm is the creative force. This force taps me into my own innate wisdom and truth-free from constraints of the mind-open and expansive like nature itself.
Q. What types of mixed media do you use?
A. I use almost every kind of traditional material alongside many unconventional mediums. Some of my traditional mediums include: oil paint, acrylic paint, inks, pencil, tempera paint and oil pastel. Some of the unconventional materials include: Earthen clay pigments, spices, wine, resins and spray paint.
Q. Why do you prefer to work with these materials?
A. I prefer working with these materials because each of them have a story-each of them capture and stand for aspects of my life, of my environment, of my culture. Each medium has its own mark, its own “way” just as we as humans do. The materials are like a family who are constantly relating, opposing and then ultimately coming together to create a place of belonging and unity.
Q. Please give a basic description of your creative process.
A. My creative process is a combination of the impulse alongside strong and clear decision making, entailing a kind of “weighing” of the picture plane. I paint with all of my work flat on the ground. My topographical view allows me to see the image as a whole. I add or take away by imagining that the canvas is floating and every mark I make carries a certain weight-attempting to maintain the planes even state. I wish is to create a place where the eye of the viewer wanders-as an adventurer would wander through new and unfounded territory. So, my creative process is about making sure the formality of the painting supports the objective-discovery, intrigue and activation of space.
Q. How do you choose your color palette?
A. My color palette is chosen according to the energy I am wishing to convey. I really like working with unique and bold color combinations. I think because of the emotional charge color has, it is one of the most effective ways to convey a feeling. I group my colors in a hierarchy-one where each color upholds the other and relates in the same way personalities do to each other-some mild, some bold, some very unexpected etc. I feel working with color in unusual ways becomes a catalyst to expand aesthetic standards.
Q. Please describe the time spent in India studying textile design.
A. I interned in Jaipur India in 2001. I worked as a textile designer for Anokhi designs. Anokhi has been a forerunner and innovator of combining European and Western aesthetics with the hand woodblock printing and natural dyeing methods of India’s antiquity. Anokhi has been preserving this art form from extinction since the 1960’s. Myself and three other designers from London came to the Anokhi compound, which is located in the rural area of Rajasthan. We created designs for exchange to stay on the Anokhi property.
Q. What influence does this have on your art-visually and/or thematically?
A. The time spent in India changed my life as an artist and as a person. I will always be deeply grateful and honored to have lived and worked in India. It was being on the farm palace grounds of Anokhi, where peacocks, lotus ponds, stone carved archways and elaborate tiling adorned the everyday of time visiting. My direct experience of Art as meditation was awakened while creating the textile patterns. It was upon my return from India, when completing my Independent study and task to create a body of work about my time working and being in India that opened my horizons as a painter. I soon realized that the only way I felt I could capture the energy and magic of such a place, was through abstraction. It was the piles of Turmeric pods, dried indigenous flowers in large copper pots set on top of wood burning fires, watching a man repetitively for hours on end pound a wooden block delicately leaving behind it’s trace of adornment…. Moments like these, the tones, the sounds, the smells, the taste, has become and will continue to be an everlasting source of awe inspiring inspiration for my work as a contemporary painter.
Q. Elaborate on the concept of ‘Abstract Landscapes”.
A. The Abstract Landscape allows for a freedom from the representational. These landscapes become an opening into the unseen. Because of the viscera and physicality within the work, the juxtaposition of textures is reminiscent of our day-to-day environment taken to an accelerated dimension. The acceleration of surface form creates an assimilated sense of rolling hills, plant life, sky and earth-only projected through the filter of imagination versus reality.
Q. How does abstraction meet your artistic ideal or match your creative desires?
A. Abstraction meets my ideals because it allows. Abstraction allows all feelings to be felt, all visions to be seen. Abstraction has become the most articulate way for me to communicate the expansiveness and liberation found in creativity.
Q. How do you feel your work has progressed throughout your career?
A. I feel very fortunate to have known from the time I was 12 years old that I am an artist. Because of this focus and clarity from such an early age, my work and relationship to my work has naturally progressed. My work is a mirror to my life. Everything I see, everyone I meet, everywhere I go, both physically and emotionally, becomes a part of my work. From the study of the figurative to working with textiles, I have fortified with abundant influence and inspiration. Because of the organic quality within my creativity, I fully trust the stages of my career. From my formal training to discovering my own unique style and voice, trust is one of the most integral aspects of my experience both creatively and professionally.
Q. Which artists do you admire?
A. My first love was Georgia O’Keefe. Her use of color and form has been a cornerstone within my life as a painter. Some of the other influential artists have been, Basquiat, for his boldness of color and line. Cy Twombly, for his graceful use of line and empty space. Fridha Khalo, for her expression of Art as story and personal tale. Mark Rothko, for his meditative color fields. Bruce Nauman, for his method of Art becoming poetry. Andy Goldsworthy, for his working within the realm of nature and using Art as a marking of man’s relationship to nature and the world around him. I admire SF Bay area artist, Catherine Sherwood, for her usage of Art as a healing tool for self- recovery. I admire Antoni Tapies, for his use of texture and object within the tradition of sculpture and painting.