One of the most vivid memories I have is also my earliest. I was 3-4 years old having pencils and crayons strewn accross lots of small pads of paper. I can’t see what I am drawing or coloring on the page though. What did stay with me, is that feeling of urgency to get this little drawing to “come to life” on the page. At the time I think I would have objected if they were described “sketches,” I took myself much too seriously by age 5. Just as clear is the feeling of sanctuary and comfort that comes with knowing when you’re at home, in your element, mine has always been art. I don’t remember not wanting to be an artist, I hope I’m still becoming one. I don’t necessarily believe in words like “mastery,” they imply limitations and ultimately a dead end. At my best moments, it feels like I’m invoking a secret “magic” that few know of, and fewer still know how to wield well! It’s the “magic” of making something from nothing, suddenly it’s there. Hopefully with a greater impact than the illusion of “reality.” To actually have conjured something out of nothing, seems like a “neat trick,” but it isn’t a “trick” at all. It’s more about becoming a conduit, an open channel, rather than a repository, (which by definition is stagnant). I was very fortunate to have parents and a special aunt and sister who did everything they could to foster my art in every way
While in Farmindale high school (in Long Island, NY), I was granted early admission to Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. However, I’ve always seen myself as a self-taught artist. My most exciting discoveries were not made under the guidance of a professor or in a classroom, but rather by working countless hours, on my own, with a need to explore and keep pushing passed my preconceptions of my limitations. I often found the most answers and comfort in artists I connected with from history, rather than people around me. My fervent and faithful belief that the possibilities are limitless within the context of drawing, painting, or making art of any kind has always been a source of solace for me. That notion and concept continues to free me as an artist and as a human being. It’s the thought that the meaning to one’s journey is not its destination, but rather that one is not attainable. When a punctuation is in sight, and implied the journey ends. When an endgame has been established, and a limit implied, complacency inhibits an unabated growth and the possibility of further growth. To keep moving is to embrace possibility and to stay in motion is to explore that freedom.
I’ve always had an interest in what surface I am working on as much as what materials I’ll be working with. I especially have a love for the beauty and character of all kinds of paper. Painting came later to me, as it intimidated me a bit because when I was about 10 years old, I thought there was a particular technique I needed to learn. I thought to myself, I don’t have any recourse to learn this technical tradition, I soon just said to myself I’ll put brush to canvas or any surface I could get ahold of,and let the “happy accidents begin“. Eventually I realized technique is important, but then you have to let it go, as with any other medium, for me growth happens by experimentation. Essentially allowing yourself, and having the courage to not adhere to any rules. Its only through freedom that one will find their “voice.”
My work’s foundation is draftsmanship, (the limitless possibilities of conveying form and light in any medium). Also integral is to keep moving closer to the purity of touch. Now more than ever, my efforts have focused on searching, and moving deeper than rendering an external likeness of a face. Instead, to evoke the humanity, the inner feelings, and psychology which binds us all as people. Since then I have been exploring and testing what paper, and other surfaces can do. The essence of my work has been to evoke the idea that even the most universal states of being, can also be as personal as everyone’s unique journey. Probably why instinctively I need to explore, and see farther by means of human touch.