"Crater" 40"x48" Acrylic on panel.
This was the largest painting in the show, and occupied a central position in it. This arresting image is based on a photograph taken by an army photographer on a Pacific Island during WWII. These soldiers are bathing, relaxing and washing their clothes in a bomb crater. Just behind the crater, a crashed Japanese fighter plane rests, its wings ripped from its body, tilting up at an extreme angle. The presence of destruction and restoration is presented in the same image. There is also a clever reference to classical nude paintings, such as Manet's "Luncheon on the Grass" Cezanne's "Large Bathers" and of course, "The Swimming Hole" by Thomas Eakins.
This painting has also been chosen to be a part of the All Oregon Art Annual, a statewide competition featured at the Oregon State Fair.
"Blur" 30"x40" Acrylic on panel.
This is a painting I worked very hard on for quite a long time. When I was finally “done” with it, I thought to myself, “Well, I’ve just made an albatross. No one will ever want this painting. It’s no good.” So I put it away and moved on. Several months later, I took it out again and thought, “Well, that’s not so bad, after all”. When I hung it up for this show, it turned out to be one of the most popular paintings there! Doing art is never predictable, always surprising, and I as the artist myself, am not always the best judge of my own work.
“Blur” is based on a snapshot from my stepfather's estate. I believe it is from the neighborhood he grew up in, Parkrose, Portland. A small boy scampers across a sunlit yard at near sunset. The photograph is taken peeping over a picket fence. The angle of the shot is so low it leads me to believe it was taken either by another child, or an adult who is stooped down, concealed behind the fence. The child is moving so fast his arms are blurred into oblivion. In fact, the child's shadow is sharper and crisper than the child himself, lending the shadow a stronger sense of reality and form; the boy is ghostly, his shadow is corporal.
"Firecracker" 30"x40" Acrylic on panel.
Based on a snapshot from the early 20th century, four young boys dash and leap away from a single spot on the pavement, where they have just lit a firecracker. The active movement the boys' bodies create is counter-acted by a very limited palette, only about 4 colors, plus white and black.
"Touch" 24"x36" Acrylic on panel.
"Please, Please, Sorry, Thank you" 30"x40" Acrylic on panel.
"Precipice" 30"x40" Acrylic on panel.
"The Heart Is Just a Muscle" 22"x28" Acrylic on panel.
This image is based on a snapshot from my late stepfather's family. His mother is the woman hidden behind the woman in yellow. The women are presumably waiting for their children while they ride a merry-go-round, a very motherly duty. The women have curiously stern expressions, which, to me, is in distinct contrast to what we usually think of as motherly.
“The Early Universe” 30”x40”. Acrylic on panel.
I attempt to accentuate the abstract shapes in the image by altering the colors of the grass slightly from space to space, and to create lay lines across the images, a la Charles Sheeler.