Artist Statement Through Self- Definition

 I am an artist.  More importantly, I am engaged in the process of making art.    Through learning and processes, exploration of mediums, ritual and life experiences, I create.  

I have a practice that is based in the process of learning. Each time I take a different course of study I learn something that relates to my work at that moment.  I am a creative observer, a chameleon that moves comfortably between the craftsperson, laborer, intellectual, farmer, engineer, educator, politician, and artist.  I enjoy having my art inspired and enhanced by the information these people share.  They fuel my knowledge base and assist me in making informed choices. There are days when the idea of art is vague, when the process and the study of process are an ephemeral progression.  Cerebral analysis of the creative process is an essential element found within the intent of my work. I constantly strive to explore how human beings examine and respond to the by-product of the process.  Through intellectual growth and stimulation, I am a better artist.

My practice is a search through mediums, to refine my artistic process for growth. I am at my best when adapting and exploring the technical and intellectual elements within the process. The audience doesn’t see the intimacies that occur within the production of my work. These elements are emotional, physical, and labor intensive.  This constant and rigorous study of material stretches my work to speak to a broader audience.  I am a receptor to whatever areas have to offer to my art.  I don’t pretend, nor do I want to be perceived as, a specialist in one specific genre. When I paint I am sculpting, building the work on the canvas. The only constant is that I am an artist.

I think of ritual and how it is interwoven within the physical processes of my work whether it is sculptural, painting, natural element, digital, and most recently mixed media.  Rollo May speaks of entering the “zone” as an artist, an area where creating takes over time, hunger, and drives the process.  I am consistently looking to enter the creative zone and am conscious of how that process changes form piece to piece.  I enjoy the ritual of breaking down the now to recreate the new.  Reconstituting the idea or item for a new purpose or reason is invigorating.  Ritual can also be a form of language, a way of dissecting issues and rethinking them.  I feel that in some cases the ritual may be more important than the finished work.  I have sometimes found that my work finds its place years after completion.  In this sense I have to view my work as never complete.  Perhaps, the meaning waits in a space of artistic purgatory. Some works come directly from my life experiences at the time of production.  They often find life because of a need to journey outside a familiar medium. Allowing my life experiences to be part of the creative process is essential to this type of work.  It is essential to my work, as a human being and as an artist.

Creating is not something I want to do,  it is something I have to do.   There are days when making art in itself is a gift and other days it feels like a life sentence because the artist never retires.  This is not an option.  You simply die and truth be told, hope you live on through your work.