Canyon Walls

The river flows swift and fitfully beneath steep ledges of red, grey and brown granite.  High above the canyon walls, a hawk glides as an apparition against a cerulean sky.  Painting like writing creates an image to bring you to the waters edge to sense the wonderment of that which surrounds us.  Each of us is carried during our lifetime on a river that spills over boulders, runs deep and tranquil, tumbles through rapids that give us substance.  My art draws on the light, color, form, line and texture that create this substance.  These galleries are a diary of my life and are reflective of the images from my river.

 

Menagerie

My art career began before I started grammar school when I was awarded first prize for a painting of a dense green jungle festooned with tropical birds of all colors.   I received more formal training in both creative writing and art as a student at the University of Illinois.  I have had several one-person exhibits in Chicago, Boston and Vermont. In Chicago, I had a one person show mostly watercolors at the Rush University gallery. 

 

A Quiet Room

My early paintings drew on the style and technique of Andrew Wyeth.  I was moved by the precision of his brush and although living in Chicago,  the tempered New England tone of his pallet.  Wyeth wrote that " I dream a lot.  I do more painting when I'm not painting.  Its in the subconscious."  As stated, the early watercolors of New England are purely imaginary taken from many sources and fused in my subconscious.  

 

Upon moving to New England, I began to sculpt wooden figures from logs that had been cut locally near our property in Sharon, Vermont.  Inspired by the wood sculpture of Henry Moore, I carved large figures from a wide range of woods including cherry, spalted maple, oak and silver birch.  I was given the opportunity to have a one person sculpture show in Woodstock, Vermont in which a number of my pieces were exhibited and purchased. 

 

Paint My Dreams

In the early 1980's, I travelled to Montreal for a retrospective of Marc Chagall.  I was drawn into his dream world of color, form and image that he created on canvas.  It was this single exposure to Chagall's painting that allowed me to turn my medium attention away from watercolor and egg tempera to oils and oil pastels. Chagall painted with passion independent of realistic logic.  He said once that "if I create from the heart nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing."  

 

These words ring true for all of my paintings in the various galleries.  Although seemingly representational and triggered in my thoughts by the color of the sky, the tonal subtleties of rock, the spidery web or tree branches, a human figure with head turned all of these paintings are imaginary and are the representation of my dreams.  Cezanne has stated that  "A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art."  The paintings in these galleries are reflective of my emotion, desire and passion to put on canvas in form, line and color my dreams.

 

Wayfarer Going

Of the diversity of components that create a painting, color to me is most precious.  It is the color of night, of heat, of cold.  It is the color of touch on a moonlit night and the purple of a far-off mountain.  The colors that I paint are those that my mind sees when my fingers touch or my ears listen.  The canvas becomes the reflection of all sensory input. Each painting is a captured moment in time, processed into an image and recreated.  Somewhere in the transfer from eye to mind to hand to canvas, the greens turn to orange and the yellows to purple.  I steal from nature and paint the color of sunlight in the late afternoon or rush of falling water over crimson stones.  The paintings are of places been and places not yet arrived. 

 

Me Before Myself

But most of all, my paintings are the collected images and dreams of my life.  I paint the green of summer, the fading yellow of autumn, the solitude of winter and the primal desire of early spring.  I bring the viewer to the brink of reality and to the shore of the mind’s eye.  It is a distant image that we see but never arrive at.  As Claude Monet stated "The richness I achieve come from Nature, the source of my inspiration."  It is from within the nature that surrounds my life that I have created these many paintings. 

Life is a magnificent obession.  Carpe diem!