"Continue, do not only practice art, but get at the very heart of it"
~Ludwig Von Beethoven, 1812
My all time hero is Beethoven. His life and work are a continual source of inspiration and education. His creative process was wild and eccentric, chaotic and explosive. Beethoven didn't waste time with etiquette and status quo, he worked--constantly pushing the limits of orchestral size, symphonic structure, and the physical limits of the musicians who had to play these revolutionary pieces for the first time. (Not to mention pushing the limits of the patience of the public, his family, and various patrons)! I discovered this quote, an excerpt from a letter written to him by a little girl named Emilie, as an art student at the College of Charleston. This quote confirms for me that I'm on the right career path and defines what it is that artists do. Artists work. Chuck Close says, "inspiration is for amateurs, the rest of us just go to work."
For me, abstraction is an action. It is not an idea in itself or some wordy, artsy--fartsy term. Rather, it is work; it is rolling up your sleeves and digging into the guts of my work. Pushed deeper through process, this work still maintains my interest in landscape. I am rediscovering the landscape through process. Vibrant green hues, soothing earth tones, and the persistence of linear division define this body of work. Compositionally, this work still embraces traditional landscape themes, linking it to a long conversation exploring the presence of man in nature. This is one of the oldest themes in art but one that has picked my brain sense I was a boy. Each piece marks another moment in the quest to dig deeper into the guts of my work and "get at the heart" of what it means to be here and what it means to be human.