Click the thumbnails to see a larger version of the painting.
French photographer Julie Wolsztynski came into the studio recently to take some shots of my workspace for the upcoming book Artists' Studios by Schiffer Publishing, due out in 2014. She took 2x2 film and then transposed the images to digital media. They were absolutely gorgeous, even moreso, considering the cramped 10' x 10' space that she was photographing! I described my studio thusly:
Intimate, cluttered and colorful, my studio looks the way the inside of an artist's brain must appear. Filled with small, oil on canvas portraits representing various aspects of political energies, as well as a massive 6-feet high by 25-feet long painting, the space squeezes color, line and form out of me like an orange juicer. It is here in this solitary basement aerie that I construct my visual responses to the world above.
It is a voyage I take daily: from the upstairs world inhabited by time, people, jobs and school, into my private space filled with pigments and dreams. Somewhere in the middle of that staircase, I exit the particulars of suburban life and enter into the realm of the ephemeral.
There, enveloped by the sounds of pulsating Afro-Caribbean beats, I set to work. Painstakingly painting, splashing, collaging, ripping and then noodling with a pen onto the more than two-dozen individual panels, I create the wall-like painting one panel at a time. In other moments, I hone in with buttery oils to make my small portraits, commentary on the American political scene.
Shards of colors stain the floor while my small studio table, piled high with brushes, acrylic and gouache paints, scraps of paper and other artistic ephemera, sags in the middle of the small space.