zaterdag 25 juli 2009
I was born in New York City in 1968 where I grew up and have spent nearly my entire life. I have been a full time professional artist since I was 18 years old.
My art career began when I was in my teens doing professional comic book illustration. Soon I was doing work for DC Comics, Marvel Comics, First Comics, and Continuity Comics. Then my work turned toward fully painted illustrations in watercolor, gouache, acrylics, and oils. I produced paintings for promotional art, covers, posters, and various comic books and horror-related published merchandise for these companies as well as Eclipse Publishing and horror writer Clive Barker. In this industry it was necessary to be adept at painting almost anything and everything, from the most imaginative and fantastic to the very prosaic: from landscapes and cityscapes to people, animals, monsters, weird settings, vehicles and machinery of all kinds.
I have shifted from illustration work to the pursuit of my own imagery and vision in fine art. I paint now exclusively in oils in medium-to-large format. Since 1998 I also began to produce life-size sculpture, working free-hand in oil clay and then casting from rubber molds in various materials, principally Ultracal gypsum cement and plastic resins.
My inspiration as both a sculptor and a painter comes from various influences some of which are considered unorthodox for a fine artist.
As a sculptor I draw a lot of technical and visual cues from the sculptural work being done in cinema special effects. It is that industry�s trailblazing use of new techniques and materials and its exploration of radical new imagery that has helped to fuel the direction of my own sculpture.
The painting style that I have been developing over the past few years I have come to call Subversive Realism. Subversive Realism represents a fusion of the skills and sensibilities which I have acquired over the years working as an illustrator and a fine artist. I began to explore sculpture first with straight life-sized, figurative work. After the first two pieces I also adopted this Subversive Realistic style for my 3-D work, where I create pieces that marry life-sized figural, detailed representationalism with equally vividly rendered, otherworldly elements.
For my painted work, my rendering style continues to be influenced both by classical painters and by illustrators working mainly in science fiction book cover illustration. In my sculpture, I feel little affinity with most of the work being done in the fine arts field. Though I am exclusively devoted to creating for a fine arts audience, by and large the sculptors with whom I exchange ideas and whom I plumb for new tips are a few artists who produce make-up and entire creatures for the movie industry.
In both my paintings and my sculpture I am striving to produce images and ideas that are contemporary to people of the 21st century, both those who are familiar with the different artistic movements of the past, and those who may have little or no experience of fine art at all.
I started my fine arts painting as a surrealist but quickly felt that the visual language of surrealism was to atavistic for the modern world, too reliant on visual structures and styles that while beautiful were out of touch with the flavor and sensibilities of today�s world. Sort of like trying to describe a punk rock concert while writing in Elizabethan English. However expertly this could be done, to me a new age and new experiences needs a new language. Though I continue to use hyper-realism as my technical framework, I am trying to evolve in both my 2-D and 3-D work a new and autonomous visual language that represents my ideas in today�s society. Subversive Realism is for me in it's infancy. It is a direction which I can feel just out in front of me. The work I am producing now feels very authentic and on track in this new direction, but for me this direction is just beginning to take shape and each of my recent pieces has been a baby step.