ARTIST  STATEMENT 2010

During the past year, elements in my painting such as ornament, optical mixing and quotation from institutional sources--once implicit in the construction of the work--have now become explicit. Unlike earlier work, which tended to share with colour field abstraction the assumption that the canvas is a tabula rasa on which the painted gesture (and thus meaning) is applied, these new works begin with a direct quotation from a historical source (such as supergraphics and psychedelic pattern) typical of late modern interior design. The choice of this source material is both specific and purposeful. It enables me to quote directly from the period of high modernism’s collapse into the visual detritus of suburbia, while creating a dynamic and chromatically dissonant backdrop for the painting. Painted gestures are then applied to this animated field much like decals applied to irregular surfaces; layers are built, partially covered with subsequent layers and optically eroded through the use of a dot matrix pattern. The result is work that floats uneasily between a kind of feigned nostalgia (a contingency built in to most abstract painting these days) and a somewhat disorienting opticality capable of destabilizing that reading of the work.