I was born in 1969 and raised by hippies in the wilds of Mendocino County, California. Then followed a stint in Northern Arizona, where I got my college degree and tangled with books, line drawings, and youth. But soon enough I heard the call of the city, and during one of many epic drives in my Ford Econoline van I found Portland, Oregon, where I have lived without regret ever since.
Making art is a lonely and layered business, and it helps if there is some kind of love involved. My first great lonely love was line, and the human form its ultimate aim. But even as I cut my teeth on the study of physicality and flesh, I sensed something less purely demonstrable within my compulsion to catch at things. In my youth I referred to this “thing” as The Moment, and I am still liable to resort to the term when other words fail, as they like to do. A moment, strictly speaking, is something that defies the straight glance. It also requires propping and must be represented if one means to account for it. I, like many who came before me, need the solace of the sensible—or that which holds still. A moment does not hold still. But something done in a moment will, or can, if one uses a tool in a certain way. I like simple tools best. I like, even, bad tools—ones that are regular, but just a little reluctant.
It is far too easy for everything to become precious—perhaps art and art-making especially. A “significant” moment/object/expression is to be determined through human action, one way or another, and held up as absolutely distinct from the less significant. The art object, as far as I can tell, is one of our favorite things to stand in for the significant in human life. It allows us to rest our senses against it and bask in the illusion of its reality. I do not know how real these things actually are, even as I pore through my own precious moments, seeking the transient yet static answers within. However, ambivalence is a beautiful thing, and not without its own symbolic value—as is the illusion of beauty, arrested in its flight from here to there, bringing with it its scaffold, its skeleton.
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