This “work’s” job is to slow you down, even just a little. History is flawed, made for the flawed by the flawed and this is the struggle I set out to depict.
I start by painting with a narrow color spectrum. Generally it’s teal, white, black and iron oxide. Then I “rust” the canvas, collage it and glaze over with oil. I do collage to include a narrative or just a sound bite. I add “retro”- collage to refer back to where the image came from (a bit like giving a tree roots) and to discretely bring in brash abstract shapes without disrupting the figurative work.
I like to narrow down the composition to three things: depth of field, shadow and light and each individual’s fight with gravity. Sports teams do it as one and each on their own which I find is powerful and well worth depicting. Each body part joins in. Portraiture starts with your feet.
I love Americana for its great void and found myself especially comfortable in the harsh light and sharp shadows of “reportage photography” of the Farm Security Administration. Americana is very appealing for someone raised in Germany where everything concerning art (figurative or not) has to be “Bedeutungsschwanger” (pregnant with meaning). I also love iconography for its weight and it’s long historic shadow.
By marrying the two I intend to throw that long shadow straight into the void and see what happens.