Who I am
Just an interdisciplinary artist living best I can in this crazy world.
I carry a sketchbook with me everywhere
I’d rather dance than just about anything
I travel around by bicycle
I lean to the left, way to the left.
I’m a Buddhist.
I collect rocks. Lots of rocks.
My vacations are built around good rockhounding sites.
Justice and mercy weigh equally in my heart
a delicate, unquiet balance that keeps me on my toes.
My mother taught me to sew when I was 4.
My dad taught me to use power tools when I was 6.
I make stuff. I’m driven to make stuff.
When I was a kid I made “contraptions.”
Room-engulfing string spiderwebs
Amulets from hammered and punched tin can lids
Necklaces from crinoid fossils
Elaborate treehouses in any tree substantial enough to hold one
Concoctions of every kitchen staple (imagine my surprised delight when I discovered cornstarch and water)
Collages from magazines, phone books, catalogs, newspapers, coloring books, drawings, comic books
As an interdisciplinary artist I examine possibilities. I study the connections between art and life, context and concept, inspiration and artifact, design and message. I shuffle through my ever-changing awareness of history, sociology, sustainability, archaeology, anthropology, earth science, gender, feminism, transcendence, science, science fiction, politics, mass media, workplace milieu, and domestic life, listening for the stories that need to be told.
I don’t start with any given medium or technique and try to find a story to tell… I start with the story and search for the medium that best tells it. I look for ways to engage the individual, to create new dialogue.
I am fascinated by time – the accumulation of moments, days, years, centuries, eons – by records and artifacts, by those brief, often inexplicable, glimpses we have of the past. My chosen art forms are ancient in nature. I work with the same processes and techniques and materials that are often found on the walls and floors of museums. My visual art practice – the context I work from – is informed by a deep respect and passion for antiquities, for the mystery of the ancient world. My praxis is deeply rooted in techniques and methods that are thousands of years old.
I am intrigued by process. Process is the journey; the work created, the destination – both are valuable but our world tends to aim our focus towards the product… I believe in examining the process as well. I continue to experiment with new ways to tell the stories I find.
I am intrigued by the idea of Inspiration – where it comes from, how we recognize when it comes knocking, and how we make sense of it. I consciously seek to recognize the influences that inform (and the distractions that confound) my awareness. I believe in taking nothing at face value – all concepts and ideas must be examined; all standards, guidelines and benchmarks questioned. The best art is not just a reiteration of what has come before, what we’ve always done – but rather a synthesis of the relationships between experience and experimentation, intuition and inspiration, passion and expression.
My practice has focused on two- and three-dimensional work created with stone, fossils, glass, metal and a collection of found objects. The stone might come off the salesfloor of a home improvement store, or the shore of Lake Superior, or an abandoned gravel pit, or out of the landscaping along some city street; the fossils both found and purchased, homage to the passage of time and its mystery; the glass as point and counterpoint, contrasting with the rough organic nature of the stone and fossils; the metal, much of that is found during my daily commute to work on my bicycle, having dropped off vehicles that travel our streets and railways, and it is often twisted, rusted, aged beyond recognition of its original use; the found objects could be just about any detritus cast off as we go about our daily lives. I work, attempting to create meaning, with mundane, familar, everyday items – things we walk on or walk by, never noticing in our haste or indifference, their ordinary overlooked beauty.