Finding Beauty in Dark Places
The Germans have a word "unheimlich" that is difficult to translate into English, although a blur between the words "uncanny" and "eerie" perhaps comes the closest to providing a definition.
In each of my paintings, I am trying to find the beauty in that uneasy twilight place between life and death, between reality and unreality, between self and what writer H.P. Lovecraft called "the others".
The objects in my paintings draw from the classic symbolism of Vanitas still life and Catholic religious paintings; all refer to the cycle of life, death, and the promise of resurrection.
I love this poem by Emily Dickinson:
I died for beauty, but was scarce
Adjusted in the tomb,
When one who died for truth was lain
In an adjoining room.
He questioned softly why I failed?
"For beauty," I replied.
"And I for truth, -the two are one;
We brethren are," he said.
And so, as kinsmen met a night,
We talked between the rooms,
Until the moss had reached our lips,
And covered up our names.
My entire body of work is an attempt to capture the feeling I get every time I read it. One day I might succeed, until then here are my paintings...