Inspired by László Moholy-Nagy work from the Bauhaus Institute in Germany from the 1930's, Light Modulators are transient paper sculptures that produce light and shadow studies. I've photographed these with a variety of large format cameras using dry plate collodion and paper negatives. The result are printed with pigment inks in various sizes.
This work combines ancestral imagery with emotionally derived painting. The drips and splatters of colors reveal hidden memories from my layered subconsciousness. These paintings show ghostly forms constructed from family photographs. They investigate the hidden evils and hopeful and calming narratives that make up the meaning of our shared humanity.
As I consider the images from my childhood I see a story unfold of how my siblings and surroundings shaped me. The pictures offer a view of our home and my everyday life. I have used this visual record to examine where I come from, to unearth the familial stories that ground me to who I am. My perceived sense of “self” and the physical and emotional ideas of “home” was the foundation I based my personal identity on. The physical home has been lost, but the stories around it remain. These visual histories remain in my mind, existing and evolving in daydreams about their experiences. They flutter on the edge of my memory, almost forgotten, merging and blending together. In my adulthood my relationships with various family members has changed. I have increasingly found that my perception of what occurred in my childhood has changed as well. These paintings are an attempt to revision these dreams and to make sense of their meanings.
For this work I always start with the painting. I don’t have a preconceive idea to start with but work with the flow of paint and color to form a base on the wood panels I use. I know that the images from my photo albums need space and ground to grow among these shapes I create, but I let the painting speak to me first and foremost. When I think the work is complete, I set it aside to dry and mature. If after a period of time (a day or a week) I find it still pleases me I take a high-resolution image of the painting and bring it in to my computer for compositing. I open my painting on my monitor and browse through my photo albums for an image that speaks to the painting. I use various methods of collage and masking to marry the two images together. The results of these endeavors are printed as a giclée on archival canvas and stretched on stretcher bars for the final display.
In "Blurred Boundaries", I (re)construct personal memory to establish a sense of "home", grounding and identity, woven together from both visual and oral family histories. In the countless times that I have perused the family album, from childhood through adulthood, a host of stories have been told surrounding this picture or that. I work to rearrange these anecdotes in a way that creates a reasonable sense of family background, and through that, a clearer self-identity.
The installation consists of 15 B&W transparencies and a looping video projected onto the ground glass viewing screen of a camera. The images were reconstructed from a found family album by layering family members over video footage from the depression and rephotographing them with pinhole cameras. The resulting images were printed on lith film that range in size from 36x48" to 36x96". The video was composites of the pinhole images with images from the album and prose written about forgotten and imagined memory.
Requiem is a suite of images made about 9/11. The images were shot with a three lens convex film plane pinhole camera like the ones I now sell called Pinhole Blenders. They were constructed in my studio using cut outs from magazines, briars and branches, projected slides and gelled theatrical lighting. The three pinhole images converge inside of the camera to make a montaged but seemless panoramic image.
Pinhole Politician was primarily while on bicycle trips during one summer. The camera used was a modified Kodak No. 2 Folding Brownie camera from 1905 which had been fitted with a pinhole lens and a curved film plane. My actors were toy figures produced in the 1950's by the Marx toy company. I placed Eisenhower and his wife in situations as if he was on the stump traveling to different places and making speeches for his election. The pinhole camera can focus from a fraction of an inch to infinity thereby making Eisenhower appear to fit in to the perspective of his surroundings.
Pinhole Blender images are from an ongoing set of work made with my line of blending pinhole cameras. My sister gave me a tin of cookies for Christmas in 2000 and after having a few all I could think of was ways of turning the cookie tin into a pinhole camera. My attempt let me start a company to sell my unique design on the web which I started in 2002. In this project I explore a variety of subjects and camera configurations. I find that pinhole cameras give me a lot of freedom to explore ideas and come up with creative images.
Exporations are projects, process experiments and works in progress.