When I close my eyes
49 Collages. Monoprint, etching, collage, ink, charcoal, spray paint, sharpie, pen.
Depending on how they are displayed, one experiences them either individually or as a unified whole. When hung consecutively one after another, they become one. I want to overwhelm the viewer with the quantity of individual pieces and the size of the whole. The viewer must choose how to interact with the body of work. One can simply walk alongside and experience the piece in their peripheral vision, or one can stop to examine each one. I strive to create a rhythm and language to how the piece is read, though ultimately the viewer must consciously or subconsciously choose the interaction.
Elements within the piece contrast and repeat. Hard-edged shapes, architectural lines, and soft natural forms compete for prevalence. My controlled mark making, shading and collaging interact with serendipitous surprises that arise out of the printmaking process. The scale of the single piece contrasts with the quantity of the whole. There is high contrast in blacks and whites, and repetition within the families of greys. I try to balance these differences.
I begin by monoprinting on each 6” by 7” piece of paper, then go back into the prints with spray paint, charcoal, inks, and collage. I cut up old prints and collaged pieces to create different shapes, textures, and compositions. It is a process of addition and subtraction, concealment and revelation. Many of the pieces have a central focal point, making an uncomfortable composition that helps unify the body of work. This focal point often takes the form of an abstract shape or dot.
I enjoy working on a small, intimate scale. It allows me to fully engage with each collage. They become private objects that evolve and transform with layers and time. This scale forces the viewer, who must get close to see detail and nuance, into a similar kind of intimacy with the pieces. Finally, working small allows me to create many collages simultaneously, which prompts exploration, mistake, and discovery.
Repetition of shape actively triggers the viewer’s memory. Reading the piece from one end to the other, the viewer may recall certain shapes or feelings. These shapes are abstractions of experiences, places, and people. They are realizations of dreams and the feeling of being lost. I see these shapes when I close my eyes.