My work is a visual dialogue between abstraction and representation in paintings, drawings, and prints. A wide variety of subjects - from the personal to the political - influence my art making. I make many pieces where nonobjective elements commingle with figurative forms. For example, here you will see work using images such as surveillance cameras; fragments of women's bodies; the wreckage left behind after hurricane Katrina; military aircraft; and birds in flight. Recently I have been working simultaneously on series that allow either abstraction or figuration to dominate more fully.
The more abstract paintings depict expansion and growth, even explosion - perhaps on the cellular level; or in infinite spatial relationships. Fragmentation of the surface image reveals glimpses into other vistas. I often think of the figurative elements in my works as nouns in a sentence – describing a particular. Removing the figure from the work allows greater freedom for any specific meaning to evolve through a synthesis with the viewer’s imagination rather than having a narrative suggested by me.
The “Breast Portraits” are the result of a process that owes as much to social practice as to painting. After a mammogram showed an abnormality in one of my breasts, I began to realize the extent to which the breasts are a cause of concern for many women, for reasons ranging from fertility, and sexuality, to body image, and disease. I e-mailed female friends – including artists, art historians, curators, collectors, and others from across the US and abroad – requesting photos of them posing in this particular way. The response was very enthusiastic. Several visited my studio to be photographed; others sent photos back to me. These paintings are part of a single work in progress. Eventually they will be exhibited together with an accompanying catalog. I hope to get as diverse a group of women to participate as possible, to explore the complex physical reality of being human.
I hope the pictures communicate a sense of humor and playfulness as well as an engagement with the world we live in today. Although many issues are referenced, the work itself remains non-linear, seeking to raise questions rather than to give answers.