My work is influenced by my childlike wonder about identity. I want to be playful with my subjects. Not necessarily for children, but for the child in all of us. Harkening to pop art, I use words like ‘Chop” and “Bam” to make a visual pun. I outline everything in varying weights of black lines to give an animated, gestural quality. All of my colors are bright because they excite the eye. Every aspect of these paintings let you know that I know there’s a joke here. The question is if you’re in on it or not.
As far as meaning, I don’t want my paintings to be particularly hard to figure out. I reduce the composition to simple phrases, emojis, flat planes of color, etc. I do this so you don’t feel like you had to do homework before coming to see my art. Everything you need to know about this work is given to you, as it is. This is also the reason I use a lot of symbols instead of a lot of words. I don’t have to explain a heart to you, it is a universal symbol of love. Same for an “x”. I am a visual learner so this is a comfortable process to me.
I use images of sliced bodies not only for the comedic value, but for the aid of examination. I give you, the viewer, power to examine me and my insides. That in turn makes me feel powerful. This gives a confidence to the colors I put on the inside of the bodies, makes them so much more intentional. I enjoy that game, finding the correct colors. Because If I choose wrong and go too blue or too yellow, then the meaning changes. The message is tainted a different flavor.
I started this series to try to deal with my own complexity. When I think of complexity, I think of multiple colors. We’re taught early on that different colors mean different things; Blue means calm, Red means passion. We’re taught the same thing about body language. Tense muscled mean pain, open arms mean trust. We also learn in childhood that there may be something different inside than what we see outside. I think that’s why kids often want to break open things. To touch, feel, and taste the goop inside of a magic 8 ball or cut open a play doh log. It’s all about exploration. The bodies float to emphasise that this is not reality. There is no horizon line to ground the figures. I, the painter, am in control of the dreamland. You, the viewer, are a guest allowed to look inside of me and receive the message.