Artist Statement for Lost in Wonderland
I want to take people on a journey, giving them a chance to see and look at things a little differently. My canvases tell the story of a vivid journey through the realm of Wonderland. I delight in combining bright, bold colors in ways that stir up emotions of pure joy. My overlapping fascinations with vivid colors and fantasy fuel my desire to distort reality, which has led to my experimentations with lines and colors. Much of my work is rooted in the Formalist notion of significant form; form itself can convey meaning. My paintings are a distortion of reality that express the energy that lives within it. I find inspiration in artists who were infatuated with line and color such as Paul Klee, Henri Rousseau, Henri Matisse and artists of the 1970’s Pattern and Decoration movement.
After a collage class, I began noticing that everything is made up of lines regardless of reality, representation or abstraction. Paul Klee, famous for his mechanical line drawings, said, “Art does not reproduce the visible; rather, it makes visible.” When I look at images I visualize complex patterns of shapes and lines that I think of as my “found patterns”. My found patterns frequently control the paintings. I start by drawing the lines and then I paint the color. I strive to depict the energy of images rather than merely reproducing them. Borrowing from the words of Henry Matisse, my paintings are “forces, to be assembled as inspiration dictates” and I want to “seek the strongest color effect possible [because] the content is of no importance.”
The playful, colorful style and the imagery present in my paintings are meant to captivate, overwhelm and evoke the feeling of pure joy. However, my colorful and bold distortions of reality are deceiving because the narrative content of my work is of no real importance. In this sense, my paintings are good nonsense and can be best thought of by borrowing Lewis Carroll’s description of Alice and Wonderland, which inspired this work:
"I’m very much afraid I didn’t mean anything but nonsense. Still, you know, words means more than what we mean to express when we use them; so a whole book ought to mean a great deal more than the writer means. So, whatever good meanings are in the book, I’m glad to accept the meanings of the book."
My paintings express so much more than I ever initially intended and they should mean so much more than I ever meant. So whatever good meanings are found in my distortion of Wonderland, I am glad to delight in those meanings as well!