moving through pain

The body of work called “Moving Through Pain” was born out the anguish of my divorce. While the subject matter is very personal is it also universal as the story and metaphor of each piece can apply to global crisis as well as individual ideas and beliefs. This body of work contains paintings, mixed media pieces, sculpture, digital media, and an installation component.

BROKEN OPEN – is a multi panel piece consisting of nails, eggshells and paint. Each nail has been meticulously placed and hand glued in a manner that suggests they were scattered once the egg was cracked open. Indeed, this piece is a play on the fable “The Goose That Laid the Golden Egg”. The viewer may take many meanings away from the visual impact of this piece and many of those are intentionally cliché; from “beauty is found from the inside out”, to “sometimes what you wish for is not at all what it’s cracked up to be”. While the gold suggests wealth and beauty and the white is suggestive of innocence, the nails belie those interpretations in favor of something else. Is it painful? Has the pain been whitewashed to attract attention to its beauty? These are questions only the viewer can answer.

The compliment to Broken Open, is NESTING. Nesting is comprised of barbed wire that has been bent into the shape of a bird’s nest and then painted white. The nest is then filled with hand blown and painted golden eggs and the sculpture hangs from the ceiling by a wedding band. Like Broken Open, the white and the gold of Nesting eases the more sinister nature of the barbed wire; attempting to calm what might otherwise be an uncomfortable look at an imperfect life.

The Barbed Wire pieces explore how words, ideas, opinions and beliefs shape our perceptions individually and globally. 

The concept is that we have all been shaped by words, ideas, opinions and beliefs and a few of those have turned into “fences”, either holding us captive or keeping us isolated. The fence tends to keep the darkest parts trapped ensuring confinement and seclusion through the sharpness of the barbs. These barriers to freedom can be applied personally as well as universally. 

“RAW” is a reflection of the most inner self. It is the place where our deepest self lay in shadows waiting for the light to expose the beauty of the darkness. The plaster has been applied in layers and has been left untreated, representing the parts of us that have not yet been molded by grace. The barbed wire represents the stories we tell ourselves about the universe and ourselves. These stories are often biting and cold so the barbed wire has been left in its natural state of decay – old and rusty as a reflection of our tired and worn out beliefs – and the edges of the piece have been left to scar as a statement to self-immolation.

“STILL AN ASS” is in direct reference to the fable, “you can put lipstick on an ass and it’s still an ass.” In this piece the plaster has been applied in layers and carefully sanded and burnished to promote the natural sheen of the material and the barbed wire has been painted gold in an effort to disguise its true nature. After careful observation we realize that at the end of the day it is still plaster and barbed wire.

“PREMEDITATED” is word play and was inspired by an Ed Ruscha (American Artist) interview in the New Yorker. In the interview Mr. Ruscha -best known for his paintings Standard Oil and Oof- stated that, “whatever [he] was going to do in art would have to be ‘completely premeditated’.” This piece with it’s color and textures can lead the mind on a great, dark adventure; a place where curiosity may get the better of us. Or not…

GREEN HEADS OF JEALOUSY are self portraits that visually describe my own anguish as well and the universal anguish of suffering due to jealousy and self doubt.