I genuinely enjoy other people’s interpretations of my work, so much so that I’ve avoided describing my personal vision and actively enquired as to what others saw in the narratives. In the last year or so I’ve noticed that collectors are genuinely curious about my motivation and so I decided to take notes on my paintings, in an effort to put in to words what my mind creates. Here are 6 descriptions of 6 of my most recent paintings; a small taste of what’s happening analytically during the creation of a composition.
Creating Wonderland is a story of a girl blending fantasy and the surreal to create her reality. The figure encompasses femininity; which is enhanced by her pastel pink party dress, bright lights and the bunny rabbits. The rabbits symbolize playfulness and hope. The composition and title are a play off Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland:. The perspective of the library cavorts with Carroll’s “Wonderland” paralleling his ideas about curiosity, imagination and knowledge.
Greatness Shall Ensue
Greatness Shall Ensue is a romantic portrait about lost love and faith. The composition is an iconic portrait where the figure is centered as representation of holiness and purity. Her sheer dress and open legs are presenting a sexualized woman. It represents not only the contradiction of western ideas of virtue but also symbolizes an open heart and how humans often mistake carnal pleasure for love. The roses are an offering but are dying symbolizing her desperation to have faith. The crows represent protection and loyalty, as well as crowding and pursuit.
The Lotus Eater
The Lotus Eater is based off mythological story about women temptresses who woo men into their dens and hold them captive under a foggy euphoric haze of sensuality and opium-like sensations. The figure in the painting is a beautiful seemingly innocent girl blowing childlike bubbles filled with lotus flowers. The lotus grows through the mud fighting it’s way to the surface and returns to the mud at night, symbolizing the struggle of mindfulness in chaos. Representing purity, creation and awakening the flowers are trapped by the lotus eater in the bubbles restricting their revelatory nature.
The Double Plus One
The Double Plus One is inspired by Dostoyevsky’s “The Double” where a man meets his doppleganger who is his exact physical double but completely different in personality. The three figures represent three different personalities and states of consciousness that project ideologies of self-discovery, i.e.: the doll persona, the judgmental persona and the innocent persona. The bright vibrant colors and feminine patterns mask the inner psycho-spiritual struggle. The hummingbird symbolizes the enjoyment of life and lightness of being. The dragonfly symbolizes change through self-realization. The butterfly’s shadow represents spiritual transformation not seen but close enough to find if she were to look up.
Arkham is based in Arkham Asylum, which is fictional insane asylum for the criminally insane in the Batman comic books. Harley Quinn (a clown faced bad girl) was institutionalized there for being insane. The figure has only one hand tied and the key to the handcuffs is in her mouth. She has all of the tools to be free yet she is fighting against the restraints. The composition and title are a metaphor for her psychological struggle. The soft sweet pallet of pastel colors fight with the psychologically jarring narrative.
The Definition of Insanity
The Definition of Insanity is a continuation of Arkham and stems from Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity; which is repeating the same thing over and over again expecting different results. The figure is still tide by one hand and still has the key in her mouth but has been caught in amount of awakening. The hummingbirds are symbolic of adaptability and wisdom moving swiftly through her personal and spiritual aspirations. If you’d like to see them in person please visit Stricoff Fine Art in Chelsea, New York, NY. www.stricoff.com