Fragments of paper and posters are depicted, referencing the flatness of drawing, while simultaneously alluding to the history of realism and tromp l’oeil. The works explore the language of drawing by superimposing traditional portraiture with a wide variety of seemingly spontaneous and ephemeral-style marks. Suggestions of spray paint, stencils, and drips are illustrated in the drawings. Illusionistic representation of graffiti dissolves into my brush work and the materiality of graphite.
For "Plunge, I photographed myself as I sank and swirled in bathwater. The documentary photos were then used as inspiration for drawing. The images depart from the framing of traditional portraiture. We zoom into close sections of the face. This cropping pushes the head to the surface of the paper, making the figure more ambiguous. Flesh and hair intertwine with ripples and bubbles. The scale of the drawings engulfs the viewer in a sea of marks. Brushstrokes break down to reveal illusion. The bathtub becomes a landscape.
“Surfaced” acknowledges the relationship between photography, painting and drawing in portraiture. I take photographs as I paint and pour liquids onto myself, using my face as a canvas. The photo shoot references the practice of drawing and painting; then the final graphite drawing references photography. The boundaries between the mediums are broken down and the processes are interwoven.
The images depart from the framing of traditional portraiture. The viewer is not given an entire bust of the subject, rather the frame zooms into up-close sections of the face. The cropping pushes the face to the surface of the paper, making the figure more ambiguous. Flesh becomes abstracted: obliterated by paint on the skin, distorted by the eye of the camera lens, or smeared by the glass of a Xerox machine.
"The Between Spaces" blurs the boundaries between dimensions The drawings ride the line between what is physical and emotional, inner and outer, real and fantasy. Elements that are innately indescribable. There is a richness in those spaces that I can explore visually.
"Lost Inside You" depicts situations where inhibitions have been let go, enabling exploration of sexuality, gender and relationships. The images delve into states of vulnerability, points where I am open to the viewer and honest with myself. I unabashedly embody my weaknesses. Impulses are no longer repressed; rather I acknowledge the validity of urges and surrender to instincts.
The drawings also have an element of fetishism and pleasuring the self, which aims to evoke passion while recognizing the inherent narcissism of self portraiture.
"You Know Me Better Than I Know Myself" explores the repressed darkness and sexuality inside all of us. I employ props, costumes and theatrics in order to provoke the dormant aspects of my identity.
These drawings are inspired by emotionally charged memory flashes that have altered my outlook on relationships. The drawing process first serves as a cathartic experience, allowing me to reevaluate the effects of these events. Soon thereafter, the rehashing merely exaggerates emotions. Reality is increasingly skewed by imagination; fiction becomes truth.
The "Vacuum" series humors society's fascination with violence, death and insanity. In these drawings, I create a tortured persona in order to embody the stereotype of the tragic artist. I exaggerate the characteristics of the crazy, unstable, melancholic artist in order to question its glorification and validity.
The clear plastic bag also serves as a technical challenge. Shine and smoothness dissolve into distressed, scratchy marks.
In the "Mask" series, I use animal masks to transform into a character or beast, exploring primal instincts and animal attributes. As I spend time analyzing, drawing, and observing the character, role-playing can transform into reality; the animalistic persona can then become part of my identity.
These drawings also use posing, nudity and stylization to investigate models of beauty, femininity, elegance and tropes of portraiture.