This collection of paintings is based on a set of my childhood drawings that I found last year. I had drawn directly on a number of reprinted black and white photographs in a book documenting a person's travels through the American West. Upon viewing my drawings anew, I saw the work of a child attempting to subvert the quaint narrative of the photographs. My younger self was refusing to play the role of passive viewer, and was instead exerting control by injecting his own perceptions into that narrative. As an adult, I could now see the impulsive and, at times, furious manner in which the drawings were created. In this new collection of paintings, I explore the underlying psychology and aesthetic choices in the original drawings.
Translating the original drawings into paintings is first and foremost an act of recontextualization. As an artist, I'm now able to apply tools that were not at my disposal as a child and, in so doing, elevate what was not originally intended as art into an art context. In these new pieces, I alter through color choices and stylization the photographs that served as the backdrop of the original drawings. I further enhance them by emphasizing certain elements, and adding or removing others. These alterations intensify the mood and emotion of the photograph while still preserving the essential characters. I then recreate each drawing on top of the new backdrop, preserving the expressive mark making of the original childhood drawings.
In painting these new works, I also felt a sense of collaboration with my younger self. I have transformed his forgotten drawings into mature, emotionally charged pieces of art that exhibit the control of a trained artist while remaining true to the raw childhood emotion that inspired them.
born: 1990, Poughkeepsie, New York
Maryland Institute College of Art, BFA, 2012
Merit Scholarship, Maryland Institute College of Art 2008
University of Maryland; BMRE Exhibition Catalogue, Adelphi, Maryland, 2013
Urbanite Magazine, Baltimore, Maryland, 2011
selected group shows
Biennial Maryland Regional Juried Art Exhibit (BMRE), University of Marylandm, Adelphi, Maryland 2013
81st Annual Cumberland Valley Artist Exhibit, Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, Hagerstown, Maryland 2013
Westmaryginiasylvanington, Hood College, the Hodson Gallery, Frederick, Maryland, 2013
Area 405: On Loan, Baltimore, Maryland, 2012