The new body of work in this exhibition, Lacunae, continues to investigate issues that have preoccupied me for over a decade: memory and language, the human figure in spaces of transformation or limned moments of consciousness, often referenced through the metaphor of water. The title Lacunae – unfilled spaces, gaps, missing parts – speaks to a more direct focus on and concern with the absence of memory, the emptiness in between what we know and do not know, the echo that remains in its wake.
In visually exploring these themes, my two aesthetic poles of enquiry – figurative and text based work – have begun to come together, conflate, such that a more nuanced or complex interplay of the elements of my painterly vocabulary has emerged.
In the works on canvas, the initial underpaintings of text – excerpts from my personal journals – readily lose themselves in ephemerality, succumbing to the water, its organic patterns of ripples and circular forms, articulating an aesthetic space that anchors itself in increasing abstraction. Not only the text, but the figures as well submit to this more abstract iteration, sliding back and forth between form and remnant, reality and trace, as I let myself intuitively respond to my own mark-making and gesture. This patterning, or pre-verbal signage, reflects the sense of erasure and loss of memory that have occupied me in the works on Mylar, presented as obscure word puzzles, literary palimpsests. Here, my refrain of stenciled words are stuttered, repeated, erased against a backdrop of full then empty spaces and gaps, mirroring the impediments, the obstructions to knowing the past and thus ourselves. By relinquishing my hold on a fully rendered figure or legible text, the spaces open up, become more evocative, resonant, a site of possibility and further discovery, a condition I continually aspire towards as a visual artist.