White Sheets (2020)
Our country's racist past and present has laid bare the character of our country, as if it was not plain to see underneath the cowl of America. These paintings start with subjects exemplifying the contradictions of greatness and terror which often occur simultaneously in America - Cowboys, football, comic books, the KKK to name a few. Our imperialist history is portrayed through political and sport figures like Teddy Roosevelt, George Custer, Jack Johnson and Colin Kaepernick. The tactile paint is meant to viscerally engage in the inspiring, terrifying nature of the violence that affects us through history and "these difficult times". My view of the American character is muddy in these waters...gritty, beautiful, horrific. As simultaneous heroes and villains, these figures intertwine with the American mythology of superheroes, Greco- Roman and Norse dieties. The emerging expression of heroism can be awe-inspiring in strength and brutal in violence. My attraction to this power belies domination and subjugation cloaked in patriotism, and patriots as flawed heroes. The subject matter is as much of visual interest to me as it is representative of the soul of our nation.