Born in: United States
Lives in: Up State New York, USA
Education: MFA - Syracuse University | BFA - Rochester Institute of Technology, School of the Arts.
Describe your art in three words: Who I Am
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A Man Ray Night - Mixed media 28 x 30 in.

"For me purely abstract and non-objective art are mere symptoms of the failure of our society to deal with the meaninglessness of a life that worships progress above all and an art that has become entertainment. I refuse to disengage from the vast history that precedes this insanity. The struggle with a readable image is paramount in my work. My work is my only voice in this wilderness of noise."

What themes does your work involve?
This series is inspired by both my night and day dreams. The dreams are based on my interaction with the individual and their work as I have understood them from reading their autobiographies, letters and studying their work. Most of the painters, sculptors, poets, authors, composers, philosophers, etc, I admire were long dead before I was born. However I am influenced by all of those I have met through their work and in books. I mostly read biographies and art history. Much of my work has been in the form of portraits of those who I hold in great esteem. I strive for more than a likeness.
Describe your creative process.
I awaken around 11:00 AM and the most important creative part of my day is the first 30 minutes in the morning. Almost all of my ideas for new pieces come to me during this period upon waking from sleep and I spend the rest of the day working out how I can bring the ideas to life. Where the ideas come from is a mystery and I do not force or try to steer the process, I just let it happen as if I am listening to the voice of someone else. I make very quick short hand sketches and notes, as some mornings it is fast and furious. It is some form of brainstorming with self in which the prime directive is "do not edit at this stage!" What ever comes to mind is all of equal value for the moment and I will separate the chaff from the wheat later.
What influences your work? What inspires you? Why do you make art?
I am a sponge and everything in life influences who I am becoming and in turn my work. I am inspired by being. I make things in gratitude for this opportunity to be able to do so. It is so amazing to be alive.
What are your goals and plans as an artist in 2023?

To get up each morning and go to work in my studio.

How do recent advancements in technology affect your art practice? How may recent developments in Artificial Intelligence (image generator software) affect the definition of fine art?
I have no favorite medium. I have always let the message dictate what would be the most capable medium to express that particular image. While drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, etc. are all part of the visual vocabulary each has its own strengths and weaknesses. The first step is to decide which one will most effectively communicate my message and then exploit its strengths with vigor. That said, I have a worn fondness for hands on simple tools and I love the sense of contact with a surface. I have embraced some technology for the sake of expediency but not creativity. I have no interest in AI, nor do I fear its impact. My images can only have come from my hand.
What is the role of the artist today?
To go to work each day like everybody else. One does not choose to be in the arts, the arts choose them.
What is good art? What makes a piece of art great?
I would like the viewer to come to the work with more than their eyes, let go of the how and why, be immersed in the image and engage with the message. I do not intend to entertain. However I understand this hope is a crap shoot and not many will make the investment. My job is to make the work and put it out there. All the rest is up to the audience. It is not unlike putting paper boats in a stream, once I let go it is no longer my concern.
An Oscar Kokoschka Night - Mixed media 27 x 41 in.
A KFC Night - Mixed media 36 x 39 in.
A Bukowski Night - Mixed media 28 x 39 in.
An Egon Schiele Night - Mixed media 33 x 39 in.


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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