In my drawings I connect with fragments of history that are on the brink of dissolution brought about by the social and economic forces of American society. The perspectives I’m interested in are not conventional, but exist in the minds of the individuals who lived their lives among the objects and structures that are my subjects. Instead of a precise rendering based on photographic sources, I make these works over the course of several weeks and under the varying conditions. The goal is to get nearer the substance of what I’m seeing, as opposed to getting swept away in the seductive surface reality generated by instantly perceivable, yet passive and romantic light. This strategy also depicts the cumulative experience of the everyday, where our lived moments are not self-contained, but resonate through time. Black ink and dry brush technique develop a space where you get lost among shadows, and deeper shadows still. As individuals we exist, day-in and day-out, merely on the surface, completely lacking an objective vision of time or meaning. While there are revelatory historical resonances emanating from certain objects, the dominant culture and ideology has rendered them largely unintelligible. By drawing these subjects in the midst of sustained observation, I hope to reattach these historical traces.
The disorientation brought on by the deep black tones intermingling with the objects and structures is also consequential in the work. This confusion is an opening and an escape from the acculturated thinking that makes us see society as stable. Concepts that guide, for example, basic ideas about success, the economy or our society’s ethics are never fully analyzed. But things do not have to be as they are. Spending an open-ended amount of time contemplating sites in transition allows for an appreciation for liminal objects and the obscured lessons they carry.