In this new body of work, Metamorphoses, I explore reflections on the process of change and transformation. I use the concept of the classic contrapposto pose; alone a symbol of movement from one state to another, and expand upon it by layering multiple gestures of the same subject to create a visual dialectic among a progression of different psychological states.
The compositions reflect stories from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. I see these moments as reflective of timeless yet contemporary issues concerning man’s multifaceted relationship with nature, while simultaneously re-iterating the oblique relationship between transformation and survival. With The Birth of Venus on the Waterline, I arranged thoughts on movement of one figure seven times, through a complete cycle representative of new and fertile life. With Icarus Passing Nature’s Boundary, I explore the relationship between two opposing points of view. The first suggests the moment of ecstasy when Icarus chooses to fly beyond the boundaries imposed upon him, and the second illustrates the sorrowful, horrific acceptance of his own hubris upon realizing his decision spurred the descent toward his ultimate demise. In Underwater Dream of Morpheus, I reflect on the darkness of night, sleep, and a time for regeneration and rebuilding of dreams before the inexorable cycle of dawn begins again. The role of the gesturing animals supports these destructive and reconstructive dualities through symbolisms their color, breed, and pose.
With the series of still lives, I explore sense of place and cultural identity based on the sensory experiences of taste and smell. I arranged compositions of indigenous ingredients to the area of the Gulf South, in celebration of the regional cuisine. The set ups are based on Flemish paintings, utilizing natural light from one direction and a dark background; allowing the unique food items to take precedence as subjects and behave on canvas almost as they do in my memory, as icons for aspects of the singular sensory culture of New Orleans.