Detail of the painting "Red House in Spring"

Artist Statement

Contact with nature is vital to my art. I search out beautiful, quiet places and I paint on site, en plein air.

In my paintings color is a compositional force. I use color as my primary vehicle for expressing form and exploring spatial relationships. As I develop a painting I look for the color key of the large masses, the planes, and light effects on both. As I go deeper into the subject matter color can be descriptive as well as serving the overall structure of the composition.

I paint what I see but my approach is a purely subjective and painterly approach. The physicality of the paint and the personality of the brush strokes have equal visual importance with "getting it right". I love the tactile quality of the paint. My medium is oil on canvas, which I feel is a superior means for the expression of color and gesture.

In my studio I am interested in how the figure/object presides in its environment and I am keenly aware of the tension between the object and negative space. Outdoors I find a similar tension, which paradoxically leads to recognition of a profound unity. Objects and their surroundings are interrelated: foreground, background, sky all have equal "presence" in the composition. I intuitively strive for the "totality" of the landscape.

I chose to paint nature because I find beauty and a healing quality in nature. I want to share this world; my paintings are a meditation on nature embodied on the canvas. Additionally, in my recent larger paintings, nature is seen through the lens of human experience and thus yearning, loss, and memory are represented.

For me painting is a journey that brings constant change and question. I draw inspiration from the works of Cezanne, Bonnard, Matisse as well as Richard Diebenkorn and David Park. My greatest goal is to be an honest, expressive painter.