In the world today we are constantly bombarded with fast-paced imagery. Not only are the images fast-paced, but our lives are too, so what is actually stationary – signs, billboards, the shiny pages of a magazine – become mere blips on our radar. We are always focused forward, moving on to the newest thing, event, trend, or fad. We catch glimpses of so many things, but what do we really see? What details will we find if we slow down?
As I have developed as an artist, there are two things that have always remained constant in my work. First is my interest in details – in the small, seemingly insignificant things that make up a part of our everyday lives; details that, in a sense, make up who we are, both individually and as a people. I enjoy painting something that someone may have looked at a hundred times but has never really seen. These details, seen up close and painted with care and detail, may make someone pause and begin to appreciate the beauty around them.
Second is my love of the written word, both as it is read and as it is used as a visual tool. Often my paintings include or are inspired by written language, from books, poems, magazines, and maps, to handwritten notes, playbills, receipts, and journal entries. Writing has cropped up in my work in paintings of postage stamps or objects on a table, as pieces of poems collaged into abstract works, and in signs cropped close to make a realistically rendered painting become abstract. I like the play between written, recognizable language and words that become an object or decoration in a painting.
My work goes back and forth between these two constants – details and words – and often contains both elements. I love to play with the combination of a close-up on words, in signs especially, causing the words to lose their meaning, or shapes to gain the look of words. My current work, two series based around Greenfield Village and Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, plays with these two things - the details and language found in the Village and the museum - changing and renewing the meaning behind objects from throughout history.