I was looking in a box for a sheet of mat board when I found this painting. It is from July 2000 and is called Something Fishy. I really am enjoying looking through these older paintings. When I painted this I only painted figurative pieces.
My exploration of abstraction has been an eye opener for me. The first thing I learned about abstraction is that it is hard. The second thing I learned is that it offers rich and endless possibilities for growth as an artist, and I have greatly enjoyed exploring materials, forms, and marks. I have also enjoyed delving into the history of abstraction in art. I think I will continue to work with abstraction, and at the same time I want to revisit figurative works.
When I look at my old work one thing that comes to mind is imagination. I always enjoyed letting go, and painting anything that came into my mind. The second thing that comes to mind is kitsch, and I’m trying to use the word kitsch in a positive way. Many of the objects, settings, and themes I incorporate into my figurative painting do contain an element of kitsch culture. I’ve often included tacky garden sculpture, toys, clothes, and art historical references into much of my work. I try to create a sense of theater, humor, and tension with these kitsch props. Maybe I’ve be successful, maybe not, But it is a rich source to mine.