Artist’s Statement

These paintings represent a tender recollection of people that I resonated with. Brazilian music is beautiful because it evokes the sadness of love. That might be said of my work.

I love color, whether of someone visually striking or that emanating from their persona. A fire-eater in the street, a pregnant friend anticipating her first child. Someone once shocked me by saying that I painted ordinary people. But, I paint to share my astonishment with a certain beauty! Perhaps “ordinary” meant that I choose people to paint who are rarely included in traditional portraiture.

The colors I use trace emotions. I shun colors which are a cliché. Toni Morrison once wrote that it was not that she couldn’t accept the portrayal of African-Americans in American literature, but the illusion created that African Americans had never existed in the American culture.

I am interested in those whose beauty too often goes unnoticed. I want to paint men as evocatively as Modigliani painted women. Obviously, if one looks at film, there has been an overwhelming fascination with the “other”. Too often in painting, the “other” has been limited to the folkloric.

My work isn’t commercial, or decorative. It appears to be portraiture, but it is quietly rebellious.