My concentration has been a continuous exploration of several recurring design themes and the evolution of those themes. I approach each work as a design problem with a solution. Variations excite and inspire me to advance the designs to the next level. Each work becomes part of that evolving series.
The collage paintings are combinations of cut painted paper, acrylic, ink, and oils on masonite and on canvas. I enjoy the challenge of cutting the paper into pieces, painting them, working on the composition and finally gluing it all down.
When involved in the art of creating a piece, “I am like an actor in the moment, so in character that at times I don’t know how I created the piece, or if I can ever again repeat the performance in exactly the same way.”
When I am painting in oils the process is different and so is the subject matter, but I also use the layering process, building color on color. I use a glazing medium, a technique that was used by the old masters and was taught to me by my college professor Ugo Giannini- 1 part damar varnish, 1 part turpentine and 1 part linseed oil that I mix with each pigment. I have also added oil sticks, ochre pigments and charcoal to this 3-part formula.
I am energized by great color combinations, and stimulated by the colors of nature, especially those found in the American desert."
~ Feet Landing on Star Tulips
~ Evolution of the Star Tulips
~ Molecular Orbs
~ Computer Virus Series / Invading Cellular Biological Viruses
In my early paintings, I painted figures called the GalaxGemini. My sign is Gemini and ever since I was a child, loved science fiction and looking up at the stars. The Galax Gemini are free-floating beings originally from outer space, inspired by way of Easter Island, Mayan, Olmec and aboriginal cultures.
In the Galax Gemini Series, The Gemini are holding stylized non-existing flowers that I named Star Tulips. They also are wearing them as earrings, and their feet have “landed” on Star Tulip branches. In the Feet Landing Series, The Galax Gemini body disappears- with only their feet and Star Tulips remaining on the canvas.
This stylized flower shape then transformed and metamorphosed into futuristic elongated sky scrapers cities called Star Cities. The metamorphose continued into modern molecular abstractions with stylized connections.
I continued with further abstractions of the form. They became Molecular Orbs, Invading Cellular Biological Viruses, and Computer Viruses.The round cell like shape can be interpreted as microscopic blowup of invasion- invading cells, a bacteria, stem cells, and our everyday nemesis the computer virus!
I will continue to explore this shape and see what develops.
In 2007, using glossy black paper, I created a large black and white collage The paper was difficult to work with, so I decided to paint designs directly on the paper.
I surrounded some of the images with dots and added red snakes. I named this piece Colorforms. Research led me to the Aboriginal Indians, who believed that figures surrounded by dots may be associated with vision seekers in a trance state. I then added Vision Seekers to the title. I continued working in this direction until a coincidence occurred....
In 2008,my husband and I were on vacation visiting Silver City, New Mexico,home of the ancient Mimbres Indians. We visited the WNMU Museum which houses the largest permanent display of Mimbres Pottery in the world. The Mimbres Indians, an ancient tribe, are the creators of pottery decorated with black and white “modern” designs. They buried their dead (sitting, under their dwellings) with the pots resting on their heads. In the center of these pot or plates, they made a hole. Archeologists named them “kill holes” and think maybe The Mimbres wanted the souls of the dead to escape through them into the next dimension or universe.
Shortly after returning from vacation, I discovered an old article I had torn out of Archeology Magazine circa 1978 on The Mimbres. I had been saving this for 30 years. Perhaps the “spirits” were guiding me to next series of works: The Life Shield Series.
The Life Shield Series are part of my invented universe, they are both tangible and a virtual reality. The shapes were inspired by pictographic images made by many different indigenous peoples but I have taken symbolic shapes and meanings, and transformed them into my own language.
At first, the designs may appear chaotic, but they are not. They are intense meditations, meant to calm the soul.They are receptacles for positive energy. The designs are contained within a circle, a mandala, a protective shield, an armor for life’s journey.
The image of the snake appears in my Life Shields and in my collages and paintings. I was influenced by Joseph Campbells’ Power of the Myth. He states that the Snake is a positive thing, it is the 2nd best thing next to the Buddha, it sheds its skin, and is a sign of re-birth. In many cultures the snake is worshiped as a god and has the Power of Life to throw off death. It is an empowering symbol.
My use of the snakes symbol enables me to add direction and line in the design to balance and weight the composition, some extending outside the circle to spread positive energy.
I agree with Kandinsky, one of my favorite artists, who “stressed that the circle was not just the synthesis of great formal opposition, but also the shape most closely connected to the cosmos and universal meaning.”
My Life Shields are connected to the cosmos and do have universal meaning. They are spiritual and communicate a life force energy and balance.
According to Robert Brault, “Among those born into chaos, some will imagine an order and become scientists; a few will recognize the chaos and become abstract artists; most others will turn to faith for understanding; and the rest will become lost souls”.
Once being a lost soul born into chaos, I recognize that art has helped me find peace and focus. When creating these works, I am into another zone- almost trance like as if the painting is painting itself.
The Vision Seekers Series
I have surrounded the skulls with dots- and believe like the Aboriginal Indians that figures surrounded by dots maybe associated with vision seekers in a trance state- trying to contact the ancestors.
"I do believe in an afterlife,and feel spirit guidance. My Ancestors are whispering in my ear and giving me positive energy and vibrations.”