"I feel like a wet seed wild in the hot blind earth."
"borhani": logic, proof (Farsi)
My artwork explores adventure, fear and the presence of unseen burdens. I often begin taking photographs at the moment when most of us look away. I work by photographing real life and fiction, as well as by gathering castoff objects, pressing leaves, and cutting delicate paper with which I create an undergirding for figurative paintings. Laying my hands on the ephemeral is how I try to salvage memories and dreams.
I draw on imagery recalled from my family, my cultural lore and my time teaching in the carceral system, along with abundant evocations and depictions of nature. I also include elements of industrial sites, now decayed, that hold a sense of longing, nostalgia and purpose for many people.
I grew up as a newcomer in a place with a violent history laid beneath stunning landmarks-- piney ridges, abandoned mine shafts, factories and smokestacks, plantations and mansions. Meanwhile my family had its own unique history with religious stigmatization, roles as both doctors and profoundly ill patients, and creative achievement. These complex, dual backgrounds affect how I see and render the world.
The warmth of neighborliness and the treasures of the natural world held me then and hold my attention now. Every day I try to balance light and dark and my artwork watches me work. We are all seeking some kind of transcendence.
Since 2021 I have been working on a non-fiction film about how land use decisions reshaped a community.
I am currently working on a multiyear photo project documenting the relationship between long term illness, the body, and how someone afflicted carries themselves in the world. I am wrapping up a painting project about overconsumption, human incursion into nature, focusing mostly on animals both untamed and domesticated, female subjects, and the dreamlike version of suburbia verging on wilderness… all realized through the ever present, overpopulated, unpredated deer. My next visual art project will be illustrating a non-fiction book about family and war.