A: I see continuity in subject matter and in medium, surely. For thirty-three years I have been inspired by foreign travel and research. In addition, I remain devoted to pushing the limits of what soft pastel can do and to promoting its merits as a fine art medium.
Here and there I see details I would render differently now; not exactly mistakes, but things that maybe could be done better. Fortunately, I think, all of my work is framed behind glass or plexiglas, making it extremely difficult to attempt revisions.
Perhaps most important of all, I see the long personal road that has advanced my work to its present state. Each gain has been hard-fought.
Comments are welcome!
Q: I have been always fascinated with the re-contexualizing power of Art and with the way some objects or even some concepts often gain a second life when they are “transduced” on a canvas or in a block of marble. So I would like to ask you if in your opinion, personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process. Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?
A: Certainly personal experience is an indispensable and inseparable part of the creative process. For me art and life are one and I suspect that is true for most artists. When I look at each of my pastel paintings I can remember what was going on in my life at the time I made it. Each is a sort of veiled autobiography waiting to be decoded and in a way, each is also a time-capsule of the larger zeitgeist. It’s still a mystery how exactly this happens but all lived experience – what’s going on in the world, books I’m reading and thinking about, movies I’ve seen that have stayed with me, places I’ve visited, etc. – overtly and/or not so obviously, finds its way into the work.
Life experience also explains why the work I do now is different from my work even five years ago. In many ways I am not the same person.
The inseparableness of art and life is one reason that travel is so important to my creative process. Artists always seek new influences that will enrich and change our work. To be an artist, indeed to be alive, is to never stop learning and growing.
Comments are welcome!