With an interest in ethnography, folklore and the truth of the everyday individual I come to painting; so through narrative I begin my work. I draw inspiration for painting from life experience, beginning with childhood. I was born and raised in a rural blue collar farming community where children grow up with the expectation and responsibility to enter into the workforce, raise a family, and continue in their community, living day-to-day by rules of practicality and thrift. My paintings draw from my rural experiences, my escape into a more culturally, politically, and academically aware world and the complexity of navigating the space between these two cultures while not fully belonging to either.
My narratives are set in rural Pennsylvania. Stories created between the girls, dolls, plants, animals, and insects are dictated by the metaphoric meanings assigned to each. The dolls reference the past and present, motherhood, childhood and heritage. The pigeons are urban rats, rural doves, and a means of escape for the girls in the narrative. The beetles are also a device for departure, an invasive species that is beautiful and threatening, powerful and fragile. The spilt blood in many of the works is a metaphor for personal sacrifice and the hair signifies memory that is unavoidable, beautiful and problematic.
Each painting refers both to my rural experience and to global and local current events. I construct the paintings in oil on smoothly primed canvas, considering in detail the significance and character of every object. The finished works call to mind magic, theater, children's stories, myth and legend and create an emotional experience that is beyond the fundamental core of the objects depicted.