At its most basic level, the mark or gesture is about the transfer of energy from an artist to a surface or substrate. It recalls a moment in time, or, on a grander scale, a moment in history. On an existential level, it says, “I exist.”
The gesture and marks are the threads that connect my work both over time and using multiple types of media – from works on paper and panel to digital drawings and photographic urban work. Because of their historical tradition and their universality, I remain fascinated and creatively inspired by marks and gestures of all types - those found in the everyday environment such as graffiti, road construction marks, stickers, and crosswalk markings, to more formal art forms like abstract art or Asian brush painting. I believe there are even gestural qualities to ancient hieroglyphs and primitive cave drawings.
Although my aesthetic has evolved from a variety of sources and experiences, a significant contribution has to be attributed to my exposure during my formative years to abstract painting, and in particular, the American Abstract Expressionist movement. Most influential perhaps on my artistic development were the works of Wilhelm DeKooning, Jackson Pollack, Robert Motherwell, and, in particular, Franz Kline. Kline’s large scale, graphic, black and white paintings exhibit an unbridled formalism that shows passion and energy, composition and technique, that ultimately create a powerful engagement with the viewer. This early exposure has also more likely contributed to my preference to create non-representational or non-objective art. For me, the potential for abstraction to tap into an undercurrent of emotions and feelings has always seemed powerful. It allows me as an artist to connect to others on a deeper and universal level.
My current body of work, “Mark, Marker, Marking” brings me back to work on paper, albeit on a larger scale. Inspired by my grid series, graffiti art, and my reoccurring love of Asian brush painting, I synthesize and interpret various traditions, honoring the vast and rich history of mark making and gesture, and, in some manner, making a record of my own existence.