The Grand Galleries
My current body of work comprises abstract acrylic paintings influenced by traditional and contemporary art of the Islamic world, American painters like Philip Taaffe, Thomas Nozkowski, and Charline von Heyl, and botanical forms.
I am drawn to contemporary art that builds on the rich heritage of Arabic calligraphy, as in the work of Shirin Neshat and Shahzia Sikander, who have transcended cultural borders to make art that grows out of their own traditions and addresses current issues for a global audience. From my Western perspective, I aspire to authentically and inventively incorporate elements of the Mideastern art I love in my work.
The images I make feel both contemporary and linked to antiquity, playful and serious, serene and intensely emotional. They suggest dreams and totems, while refraining from any explicit storytelling.
With regard to technique, I create tension between control and intentional lack of control in my brushwork. Frequently, this occurs with the application of a loose and intuitively painted underlayer that is refined and elaborated - and sometimes almost obliterated - by more controlled overlying layers. I use vibrant and unorthodox color combinations to awaken the eye and emotions. I mix mediums into the paint and etch into the painted surface, creating varying textures and drawing attention to the physicality of the piece.
There is no deep, intellectual or mysterious reason why I paint wildlife. My wildlife and nature art is simply the product of my passion for all living things and my lifelong desire to create artwork. Since very early in my childhood, I’ve had an interest in drawing and a curiosity to understand the complexity and diversity of the natural world. It’s that interest that inspires me to create artwork combining strong compositions using detail and accuracy with interesting light, color and atmosphere. Capturing the character of each of species is also a primary goal. Despite the seemingly endless abundance of local birds and mammals in the Brandywine Valley, I also enjoy traveling throughout the United States and Canada, whenever possible, in a continuous search for new animals and scenes to paint. These travels have taken me to places, where I’ve seen all types of animals I never thought I’d get the chance to see in the wild. Although I consider myself very proficient with several mediums, I prefer and primarily work with acrylics.
As you walk around the gallery space, looking at my work, I hope you walk away with a greater appreciation of the natural world around us, pondering the various concepts of habitat and wildlife conservation.