I was born March 5, 1968, in Southampton, New York into a working class family of six children raised solely by my mother. As a child, I was quiet, somewhat reclusive. Art was my escape from the financially strained environment created by an alcoholic, abusive, and missing father. Art came naturally to me and it was a way out from my reality and a way to hopefully be accepted into society.
In 1986, I was the first and only family member to go to college. I studied Landscape Architecture. It was during this time that my mind began to turn irritated, irrational, and delusional. I became sleep deprived and more reclusive. I enrolled in so-called master art program and drew and painted constantly, but destroyed most of the works. I finished a somewhat disturbing two-year environmental program, but never went back to Architecture.
At the end of 1990 I was accepted to the Fashion Institute of Technologies art program. Four months later, I left the program to study Advertising Communications and completed this in 1992.
In 1993, I began experimenting with oils and took an interest in the impressionists and post-impressionists movements. Cezanne, Van Gogh, Degas, and Matisse most influenced my work. I studied their techniques through books and had my first show of impressionist works in 1994. Additionally, music became a more powerful force in my work, driving me to create and escape the constraints of reality into the subconscious realm. I adapted to painting with my hands, instead of brushes, to keep up with the rapid pace at which I was producing. A pivotal point came in 1996 after attending the retrospective for Jasper Johns at the Museum of Modern Art. His raw and inventive works drastically impacted my creativity, broadening my scope of what was considered art. I realized I had absolute freedom to create whatever my mind wanted. The works from 1995 to 1997 represent these changes through abstract, painterly, three-dimensional landscapes and figuratives.
From 1997, the works were gaining a more expressionistic, surrealistic, and darker quality. I was becoming deeply interested in Physics. The theories helped me to comprehend my existence here. I incorporated the theories into the art, which became underlying themes of the work today. The works consisted of atoms, molecules, quarks, dark matter, nebulas, multiple dimensions, particle matter, and births of stars, planets, and universes.
By 1998, I had lost touch with reality. Artists such as Amedeo Modigliani, Francis Bacon, and Egon Schiele became my role models. I identified with them and their work. I felt I was living in a holographic projection of a one-dimensional reality. I had difficulty relating to society and convinced myself that I did not belong to this world and continuously looked for a way out. My art became the visual evidence of my turbulent mind. My interests grew into the fields of astrophysics and astrobiology, further encouraging my mind that I was living in history, not in reality.
In 1999, a second fundamental moment for my work came when I went to the retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum for Franceso Clemente. I immediately embraced his work especially the piece entitled “Skin”. This work showed me how to portray humanistic qualities in a figurative without it looking so human.
My art became significantly larger in scale as I continued to experiment with multiple materials. I introduced a clay-like material known as Spackle that added a thicker, heavier texture to the work in the form of a modern day fresco. The paintings consisted of colorful, very tall, drawn out, featureless bodies with massive appendages depicting how the human form may appear existing in other planetary systems and universes, ten dimensions of space-time, traveling through a wormhole, and in the one-dimensional string membrane. These works were the representation of where my mind thought it came from and how the human form truly existed.
After 2001, I went into a creative coma. I had gained consciousness of reality, became more involved in society, and accepted that this is where I actually existed. Feeling “normal” suppressed and restrained my mind. I grew fatigued and forced myself to create. The works became small, subdued, with less intensity and emotion. Today, I am making an enthusiastic effort to reinstate myself in the art. The work has become more complex and sophisticated, drawing on the same themes, influences, and inspirations as before. I’ve learned to cope with the ongoing struggle between what is reality and what may not be.