I make drawings and paintings of figures that I hope illicit empathy and identification on the part of the viewer. The use of childish imagery, rooted in the same imagery as historical Pop Art (20th century newspaper comics, animated cartoons, advertising) instills them with a sense of humor and pathos, while aspiring to represent a world of complicated adult emotions.

Somewhere in the gap between mordant imagery and unembarrassed expression, nuances of feeling arise. Thus Pop Art, as an historic style and set of concerns is my adopted tradition, in the manner of Chinese landscape painting that re-works conventions to wrest idiosyncratic poetry whose true subject is the painter’s communing imagination.

Black line and unmodulated color areas are my fundamental tools. Within this classically restrained language, line nonetheless becomes expressive and productively ambiguous, and color has no limits. The scale of the work tends toward one-to-one, an attempt to foster equality and intimacy between the figures and the viewer.

The figures, animals portraying “actresses” wearing outmoded clothing, are a nod to drag and camp. Playing with these layers of artifice is a way of reflecting on the act of imaginative representation itself. Are “actresses” to adults as cartoon animals are to children? The conflation of animal and “actress” returns us to archaic roots: dread, ecstasy, mourning…And yet, they are only cartoons and make us smile.

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