Artist Statement

I am a conduit for what is seeking to be. So many images come floating into my consciousness. They arrive along life’s meandering road, via dreams, or prompts given to me. Some will stick around. Others will go on in search of another artist. Those that stay don’t reveal themselves completely. They will play along with my imagination letting me mull them over. Unless there is a need, I do all the sketching in my head. I visualize until I can almost see the finished piece. It won’t be as clear as a photo, because I need to leave room for modifications as the work unfolds.
One reason I embrace paper cutting is that although the material may seem unforgiving, what appears as a false cut may be guiding me in a better direction. I like that interplay between control and serendipity. Even if I layout a design digitally, I don’t do it in great detail. To improvise with what is developing keeps the process alive and exciting. For the same reason I like to work in collaboration with others. I never know where others will lead the conversation or how it will affect the finished piece.
Another reason I make paper cuts is that the medium is so ordinary. Paper is so taken for granted. It is thrown away without much consideration. So when I make a paper cut it becomes an extraordinary object. Paper reflects a characteristic of humanity. Both have an inner strength that’s not always visible. Paper is tougher than you think. I’ve cut designs that are as large as four by eight feet. It even amazes me to see how the thin, web like structures I cut with a craft knife holds together without tearing. Viewing these structures, people can reassess this common resource. Hopefully, they will take a fresh look at all the materials that flow in and out of their own lives with a new sense of appreciation.
Inspiration often delivers to me themes best expressed by nature and the human form. I guess I could have written “nature” alone as we now understand we are so immersed in that universe. That connection allows me to illustrate beauty, reality, and complex ideas. “Seeds,” “broken branches,” “birds in flight,” and “whirlwinds” are universal symbols. I can use them to speak to diverse groups conveying broader meaning. Likewise, how I place or pose the human form, whether we recognize the individual or not, tells a story. One that all humans can feel within their own bodies.
Being a conduit is my purpose as an artist. To create something that wants to materialize is a powerful act. And once created, it has its own power to interact with those that view it.