What do you want people to do or feel when they encounter your creations?
"When someone is looking at my work, I want their experience to be two-fold. First, I want them to be interested from an aesthetic point-of-view. From there, I feel my work is successful if the aesthetic leads to intrigue or conceptual questions. E.g. The interested viewer is pulled-in by formal qualities, looks longer and finds something that leaves them feeling inspired."
"I am inspired by other artists, musicians, entrepreneurs and really anyone who isn't afraid to pursue their passion whatever that might be. I love sport and always looked up to female athletes as sort of the coolest people in the world. But, there is a lot that inspires me which is personal, like interactions with friends, family, hardship, happiness..."
"We typically think about artists having one unique style or brand-able gesture that is cohesive across their body of work. I guess what's unique about my work is that I have multiples styles I am interested in making. I was trained in representational figurative oil painting, but over the years my hand has relaxed into abstract work with a combination of house paint, spray paint and acrylic. I became really interested in the materiality of my work, both the alchemy and the actual conceptual significance of a given material. Some themes that tend to re-occur are the figure, flowers, textiles and large-scale formats."
How do your pieces come to life? Tell us one interesting thing about your creative process?
"I’ll have an idea in my head and I'm like wow okay let’s go. Then I sketch it out on a canvas, which I always find so beautiful because of the delicate outlines - contrast exists only between whites and grays, and there is all this imaginative promise of what the final result might be. And then... The pressure of this 'precious' sketch gives me a sense of paralysis, I don't want to start because I'm worried I'll screw it up. So I screw it up immediately. I make bold marks, I use dark colors, mix paint directly on the canvas, re-sketch over paint, etc. What this allows is a whole new realm of possibilities based on that original mental image. I find the best ideas are simple yet have the capacity to evolve and grow - by 'messing' up my sketches, I am letting myself creatively problem solve. The image is ‘done’ when nothing in it is bothering me anymore. I consider my work not so much ‘finished’ as 'resolved'. The composition, line, color, concepts, etc., feel present and nothing is competing or distracting - the image feels unified."
What funny moments, unexpected surprises, or obstacles have you encountered?
"I got a stretcher caught in a doorway once. It was brutal cause I spent like two days building it and then it literally snapped trying to get it into my studio. I also carried a 12ft by 6ft WET oil painting across my underground campus during a snowstorm in Canada for an exhibition at the campus library. Memories..."