Exhibition Statement, Western Michigan University, 1992
Oddly enough the first painting for this exhibit was started a matter of hours before the Gulf War began to unravel on the evening news, January 16. “America Remembers” is a reference to the kind of patriotism displayed earlier in our history that seemed to emerge, for better or worse, as the problems in the Middle East heightened.
Because my work tends to be intuitive and symbolic rather than intellectual, this relationship was not immediately apparent. Rejuvenating an elder Super Hero seemed only the result of not being able to resist buying a four-inch Dick Tracy figure at the video store. A more logical explanation than reinventing a champion to save the world.
The figure persisted, however, in somewhat altered and certainly more obscure forms, until the Gulf conflict subsided. Only then did my work begin to return to less threatening and more familiar images.
This scenario is quite consistent with the way my painting usually evolves. It seems to be a combination of internal and external events, filtered through an obscure process and emerging as a visual narrative, often eluding verbal explanations. Even in a finished state a painting normally contains an element of mystery for me.
Although some of the work in this exhibit is thematically related, that was not my intent. Rather, it is the result of responding to everyday events, some dramatic, but most quite ordinary.