I see painting as a relational practice. My current paintings are imaginary, composite images of girls and women. Depicted in varying states of visibility and transformation, they gaze directly at the viewer or outside the frame. Based on people I know, vernacular photographs and women artists from art history, I combine fragments of different faces to create one that is animated and present, imperfect rather than ideal. Contrasting interior and persona, the paintings explore vulnerability, the circularity of time, and the nature of how and what we see. These themes are through-lines in my work.
The paintings are process-driven, juxtaposing gestural figuration and geometric abstraction against atmospheric fields of color. The viscosity and flexibility of oil paint and the flow of water-based paints facilitate different effects of surface and depth. Intermittently sanding and scraping paint down to the wood panel, I leave visible traces of previous marks, building a visual history of the painting that in turn creates the image. I paint until a specific presence emerges through the process, not a particular likeness. Everything is in flux until it’s not. I cultivate vulnerability and emotional resonance in my work, and the history and materiality of painting.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, my job as a professor of art at a women-centered university prompted the expansion of my subjects from adults to young women. Other influences include daily life and the current political climate where women’s autonomy is under attack - these lived experiences feed the work.