I am fortunate to live surrounded by large expanses of fields and woods, so much of my work begins with the observation of both wild and cultivated elements of nature that grow around me. I’ve always been drawn to both the subtle and dramatic changes that occur daily in my environment. Patterns, color relationships, textural surfaces, and the effects of invisible forces that alter the environment (gravity and wind) are noted and find a way into the images I create.
Most recently, I’ve worked using a painted tape technique I developed that originally relates back to textile and painted work that were explored on 2-and 3-D surfaces. At first, scraps of tape used to mask out areas in one work were used to create new images. They then morphed into painted strips of tape made in a more methodical manner. I now create strips of tape painted in patterns and gradations of colors that serve as a sticky paper palette with which I make collages and mixed media images.
My “Gravity” series explores the idea of gravity’s insistent force. I want to distill this force into lines that suggest movement and energy. Each line begins with one line reacting to something. As I add line after line, I try to remain flexible and open to the energy implied by each one. I find pleasure seeing something germinate, initially reach for the sun, and then in the plant’s waning days, fall back to earth. The collages in this series depict lines reaching, sagging, or becoming entangled. They reflect a reference to the real world but also to the passing of time and the inevitable changes brought about by gravity. “What goes up, comes down” is the insistent thought that drives this series and helps make these visual metaphors.
Sometimes my work is more literal, however. I’ve also been working on an ongoing series of collages based on vintage botanical imagery. They can be both specific to a species, or grow from my own imagined garden—a compilation of the patterns of growth I’ve seen around me. They pay homage to the endless complexity and beauty I see in my environment.