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Paul T. Kirley

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Boston, MA

Birth year

Lives in
Northern California

Works in
Northern California


Art Center College, 1991, BS

Representing galleries

abstract, digital, mixed-media, city, modern, urban


I create visual experiences that connect people to place as though they were dreaming. 

As we dream, we recall imagery in series. We visit the past and we aspire to participate in the events of our future. We create worlds rooted in personal context and deeply connected to our emotions. In these landscapes we face our fears, we are spiritually moved, and sensually connected. Some of our dream experiences are so believable and powerful that they call us to action in our everyday lives. 

The challenge of representing the dream landscape has led me to explore the human dream experience as a series of combined elements. Lucid elements are the centerpieces of context and meaning in dreamscapes. Surrounding these clear focal points, we find an ephemeral blur or haze where images abstract and fade, connect and transition. Story scenarios play out in repeated sequences, often changing or prompting us to revise them. We solve problems, seek answers, wander, search, run, fall, yearn, fear and lust, all in cyclical short film like sequences.  

My process begins as a series of digital photographic events. Iconic images and stories are identified and catalogued. Selections are then composed and combined with found objects yielding a narrative assemblage. The final step in the process includes expressing connections between the representational landscapes and ephemeral dreamscape experiences. Links between the two worlds are created as a series of traditionally painted layers and gestures. The plastic physicality of paint coveys abstract human emotions. Contrasting the clarity and formality of the photographic elements and three dimensional objects, brush strokes and washes complete the dreamscapes adding transitional dream fragments and a sense of motion. 

The creative process of each piece presents me with opportunities to live fully immersed in the stories and places of our dreams.


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