My work is a visual journal of image, text, and found objects that document the people and places I encounter as well as my memories of my family. Through the practice of painting I explore my daily experiences as a sister, daughter, wife, and career woman. Â My found objects are scraps of trash collected throughout my day, but I believe they hold a history and energy directly related to my experience in both the domestic and work setting.
Recently, I have noticed the literature I read with my students interweaving with my imagery. Â Fictional characters of childhood stories such as Alice, the white rabbit and his ticking clock, Rapunzel, mermaids, and sleep deprived princesses now create a link between my documented life and fantasy by acting as place holders for people and emotional experiences.
There are several symbols I find myself attracted to such as the tenshu, tower, and it's historical reference to power being re-imagined in stacks of pillows and fabric (a very soft representation of the home and childhood imagination). Â I am also fascinated by the historical use of gold in religious and political work as signifier of both wealth, and the divine. Â The painted and cut out silhouettes sourced from photographs, memory, and childrenâ€™s stories are characters in the painted landscape of pillows and blankets that collectively create intimate self-portraits through narrative.
The paintings are typically small intimate pages of my visual journal.Â When possible, I prefer to paint on found parts of cabinets or other furniture from the home, work, or studio to reinforce the intimacy.Â This leads to a variation of size and material, but that becomes an important aspect of the narrative.Â I am enjoying the small size in its relationship to my body. Â Small work can be held easily and loomed over.Â It also begs for me to enter its space and lean in closely to work.Â Conversely, the large work wishes to dominate me with itâ€™s size and forces me to adjust my body to create it.Â This I feel detracts from my intent to have intimate conversation, but perhaps lends itself to representing outside issues that have both in physical and emotion distance from myself.
In spite of the variety, there are repeating elements such as the fabric, pillows, clock, and characters which allow the small paintings to function together as a whole.Â Apart they may seem like frozen scenes or tableaus, but together the context of the images change and larger issues may be addressed.Â I find this functions similar to a book in the sense that individual chapters or selections may be powerful and function alone for a singular message, but when put together as a whole they create a story.