Little Gunpowder on Big Paper
Growing up in a fairly industrial area on the southwest side of Chicago—near railroads, factories, highways and an airport—there were few occasions in my youth to experience areas without the heavy influence of man’s touch. In contrast, for the last decade, I’ve lived in Harford County, Maryland, in the midst of the Gunpowder State Park, or more specifically, in the Little Gunpowder valley. In all of its power and grace, my own backyard has become an endless source of dramatic inspiration and quiet refuge at all times of the year, but particularly in the fall and winter. This series has provided me wonderful opportunities to capture the essence of my experience, suggesting a walk through the deep woods with an occasional opening onto a clearing. By painting large and on-location, very quickly and directly, I allow for surprises in the process. Pure pigments melt into plenty of water, with marks, scratches, drips and splatters all being part of the painting, forcing me to think less and feel more.