Lately, there seem to be more and more disasters in the world. From unprecedented flooding in Pakistan, to our own recent oil spill catastrophe, it appears that the speed of modern life does not give us time to consider and plan for critical situations. In this scope of knowledge of the Earth's power, we become little ants and flies, dying by the thousands in disasters, wars and conflicts.
The shell has always been a mystery for me; how does the mollusk form its house from such tiny particles into such a beautiful form? How has it stumbled upon such intricate architectural structures? The shell represents the enigma of all creatures - the urge to live. Despite our disasters, we continue to carry on our business, spend time with friends and family, enjoy the sunlight and the rain.
When I hear the latest news, my urge is to hide, to escape, to find a secure place, to find my shell. My sculptures, the shell dwellers, are beings conjured from an alternate universe where that urge can be immediately gratified; everyone carries their security around with them at all times. Melancholy knights, they never discard their armor. But more than that, they also carry around their stories for everyone to see. Others can look at their tattooed shells and understand why the shell dweller may be hiding at that moment. Their fresco-like shell surfaces hark back to the ruins of Pompeii. There we discovered a language of pictures that communicated to people from all walks of life and many parts of the world. Although I may want to hide at times, I am still optimistic that we can find common understanding among our stories.