For many years I have driven from Woodstock to Ingersoll on my favourite back roads. Ingersoll Commute is a series of paintings created from memories and impressions of moving through that space.
Rather than seek the specifics of any one view or place I have let the work lead me to these stored interior landscapes.
My paintings continue to evolve and emerge from the multiple layers of marks, scribbles, scratches and collage. Although collage is not new to me for this series I have used saved pieces of past work created during the years of the commute further unearthing memories of that time and space.
My work is both a highly personal response to my own life, and an attempt to contribute to contemporary painting. When I am working with a representational image, abstract elements will permeate the piece. At other times, an abstract field of colour might have but a small suggestion of a tree line as the only literal device, to anchor the abstract.
I’m not after a highly polished final painting. In fact I tend to enjoy ‘roughage’, and the way it works with smooth flat surfaces.
I’m interested in the crossing-over point between contrasts – sometimes harmonious, sometimes abrupt – blistering charcoal merging with dripping paint – controlled drawing rubs up against random marks.
Studio work offers sustained thought, while location work offers sustained observation. I move back and forth between the two, and often combine them.
Winston Churchill said he did some of his best thinking while painting. I say, I do some of my best painting sitting in a ditch.
My interest has always been focused on the intimate levels of human relations, and the factors shaping our identities. Painting seems to reflect and reveal some of the strongest aspects of my concerns – power and fragility, systems and individuality, narrative of human experience. Although mostly working with themes from personal experience, I seek to portray shared human experiences in ways which allow the viewer to expand upon the facts I present, with his or her own experience and memories. It is important to me that the beholder becomes personal with the work rather than trying to “read it”.