The Body Knows

Embodiment has been the focus of my image making for the past twenty years. All we know is mediated through the body, making it, inescapably, the central site of meaning. I am not interested in the surface superficialities of the body but in going deeper, going inside in an exploration of states of being. My work uses encaustic layered over graphite drawings, usually of figures, and juxtaposes these figurative panels with planes of steel, gold and lead. In recent years, the discovery of material has been exhilarating. Materials such as steel, wax, lead and gold carry meanings ranging from precious to toxic, and when paired with the figure, heighten a corporeal reading of the figure. I am interested in furthering the exploration of the meaning of body to include signs and symbols. Recent work juxtaposes depth maps (navigational charts) with the figure in an attempt to map the inner meanings of body. One critic has described my work as engaging in the "post-ironic search for meaning."

The Body Knows explores the body and its relation to breath, the primal act and symbol of life. The work explores an internal, contemplative gaze and deals with issues as elemental as the materials. Breath, listening and attentiveness are corporeal and material matters that lead to wider spiritual questions.

The figurative work of Magdalena Abakanowicz, Betty Goodwin, Jim Dine and Stephen De Staebler has influenced my treatment of the figure. Bill Viola's images of figures passing through water and fire and his interest in ritual, states of being and transformation have influenced the concept of figure in my work. Mark Rothko's spiritualized color field paintings and Barnett Newman's contemplative abstract expressionism have both influenced the formal construction of my work.