I have a whole world hidden inside my head, a world full of organisms with their own rhythm and their own way of relating to each other. Seeing life forms triggers them to morph and evolve inside my thoughts, making all organic species into my springboard for artmaking.
These organisms reveal both devastating, fierce, uncontrolled energy and overwhelming swells of serenely floating calm that is inside each of us.
AT TIMES, MY ART PIECES SEEM TO REPRESENT AN UNFINISHED PROCESS WITH TRACES OF PAST JOURNEYS AND PATHWAYS FOR FUTURE EXPLORATION. MY WORK ASKS US TO FIND THAT PLACE IN OURSELVES.
I USED TO BELIEVE THAT EACH PIECE OF ARTWORK I MADE BEGAN THE MINUTE I STEPPED INTO THE PROCESS. NOW I REALIZE THAT MY ART MAKING HAS ALWAYS BEEN IN ME AS FAR BACK AS I CAN REMEMBER.
EACH PIECE COMES FROM INSIDE OF ME, LEADING CONTINUOUSLY INTO THE NEXT ONE.
IT’S A LIFELONG, SPONTANEOUS EVOLUTION THAT GIVES A VOICE TO WHATEVER I FEEL AND THINK AT A GIVEN MOMENT IN TIME, JUST LIKE THE UNIQUE JOURNEY INSIDE EACH OF US THROUGH LIFE’S EXPERIENCES.
Coverings, detail - silk, thread, wool roving, beads, and gorilla glue, 24" x 24", 2013
OUR FAMILY LIFE WAS CYCLICAL AND ENRICHED BY PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS WHO HAD PASSION FOR MUSIC, BOOKS, AND BEAUTIFUL HOLIDAYS. TEXTILES REEMERGED FROM THE PAST, PASSED ON BY MY GRANDFATHER WHO LEARNED TAILORING AFTER FLEEING FROM THE POGROMS. MY OTHER GRANDFATHER LOVED TO DRAW, AND MY FATHER LOVED TO GARDEN.
I AM NOT SURPRISED THAT THE BIOLOGIC WORLD OPENED UP TO ME, SINCE I HAD SPENT MY CHILDHOOD WALKING WITH MY FATHER IN HIS GARDEN, POLLENATING DAYLILIES, AND CUTTING OPEN STRANGE VEGETABLES. I HAVE DEVELOPED A NEED TO HOLD AND FEEL THESE ORGANISMS.
Hidden Things Installation - steel, textiles, hosta leaves, gorilla glue, moss, H32" x L120" x W14" (variable), Individual pieces 12" x 5" (variable)
When visiting the acidic, boiling springs at Yellowstone National Park, I was overwhelmed realizing that all living things on earth, including humans, share elements of life.
THE EXPERIENCE HEIGHTENED MY SENSE OF OUR RELATIONSHIP INSIDE OURSELVES, TO EACH OTHER, AND TO ALL LIFE ON OUR PLANET—FROM GIGANTIC TREES TO MICROSCOPIC MOLD AND FUNGI AND, YES, TO VIRUSES.
I got myself a digital microscope. It enables a whole world of imaginary organisms to flourish in my mind.
When COVID-19 became part of our lives, spending more time inside myself was a silver lining. But this novel virus took me to a place I’d never been before.
All of a sudden, it became excruciating to think that all living things, including this deadly virus, share the same ecosystem, a system that we’ve failed to preserve.
I looked at the series of drawings I had been working on called "Hidden Things Evolving."
The organisms in these drawings reflect growth and decay along with beautiful molds and fungi, but they’re drawn on paper that doesn’t address the excruciating feelings of immediacy I had as the virus and climate change invaded my thoughts full time.
The paper was dictating the boundaries of the images, rather than the images dictating the form of the paper.
I decided to leave the paper outside for a month. Being left outside for all that time, it became a diary of flooding and storms, and demanded that we not turn away from its reality
As the ravaged paper became unbearable to work with, I beautified it by adding elements of "silver lining," to remind us how precious life is, and that protecting it is vital.
All images are courtesy of the artist