This Painting was done at a time when searching for a job was very competitive and difficult. The process involved in applying for jobs seemed like being on a funhouse amusement park ride. The struggles of acquiring a job are reflected in the figures and landscape of this painting.
This checkerboard landscape symbolizes how we have to position ourselves while we navigate through the maze of seeking employment. There is also some tension evident in the figures, as some seem to be trapped with no ability to move forward, while others travel freely through the labyrinth.
Red Eyes is based on an eventful night my roommate in New York once had. He had been drinking and was almost mugged by a man on the street that said he was a cop.A friend chased off the would-be assaulter with a butchers knife.
Life in the city had an amazing influence on my work. The city’s energy was a constant resource of imagery and content. I began painting with a palette knife and pastry tool that my Dad gave me, to build up the surface. At one point I tried using a butter knife. These techniques yielded a more expressive painterly style to my work.
On my first trip to New York I saw an image of the Bronx that stuck with me for years and later inspired this painting. I made a very loose sketch with ink washes, but it did not capture the details that were embedded in my memory. When I started the final canvas it was as if my brushes did all the work, and the painting seemed to take form on its own.
Refuge was part of a series of paintings I made while living in New York. I liked the idea of working with an umbrella as an image and a metaphor to create a sense of protection or refuge. The figures under the umbrella loosely represented a former girlfriend and me. The painting is very dark and there are suggestions of figures looming in the background.
I was explaining to a group of people how there was a love-hate relationship going on in my life at the time when I created this painting. And one of the group pointed out that the relationship was well illustrated in the way I painted the female figure under the umbrella. It was as if I split the face in two and painted half normal and the other half with more expression and distortion to represent the tension I felt. I loved their interpretation and saw what they meant. But it was something that must have been derived from my subconscious.
Originally titled The Drowning Man, this painting is really a story of survival. Many times I was counseled by people who were trying to hold me back from what I really wanted to do. I created this work as a way of keeping people from holding me back and pulling me down with them.
I lived in New York City for a short time in 1984. The people in the street and the hustle of every day life astonished me. Don’t Walk is a contradiction of terms. Though h the sign clearly states, “Walk”, it does not necessarily mean that it is safe to do so in the Big Apple. There are many things that we take for granted in our lives that may not be safe to do in the city. Not even walking the streets.
Ebb Tide is my protest to traditional seascape paintings. As with most of my canvases this piece is large enough to almost walk into. It comes complete with a seagull and crashing waves. However, it is painted with a bit of humor and an unusual look at sunbathing and boating.
Livermore Falls is located in New Hampshire just a few miles from a piece of property that we purchased in 1986. The falls is a wild drop on the Pemigewasset River and a fun place to play.
This painting shows two sides of the New Hampshire landscape. The upper painting is calm and serene, the lower half is wild and adventurous. This painting was sold in a gallery on Newbury Street to a collector. I was very excited to have sold the piece, but more thrilled when the purchaser explained what he felt the painting was about, and he nailed the intended content.
This painting was derived from an obscure look at a Texas stew party. In the cow fields of East Texas men would gather to eat “Highway 11” stew, and eventually, a crapshoot would break out late into the evening. Years later I moved to Connecticut where the Native American casinos became a dominant fixture. The affect that gambling had on individuals, while participants rolled the dice, led me to render this painting.
Party Out of Bounds
This painting is based loosely on my life as a young adult. Some of my friends had substance abuse problems that they continue to struggle with. It is rare that I paint specific people in my work, but in this painting I rendered a good friend that has yet to face his addictions. There is some humor mixed with more disturbing images to lighten up the gloom of its content.
Party Out Of Bounds
No Breakfast Tonight
Some of my friends and I rented a cottage on Cape Cod. Occasionally we would have friends and family in for a visit. On one evening some of our guests had gotten out of control and outstayed their welcome. During a late night encounter they started to raid our refrigerator and began a feeding frenzy with the food we had stored. Eventually, the food was removed from the stove while it was being cooked, and was thrown out the door, pan and all. The guests were given the same treatment. Their unwelcomed behavior inspired this painting.
No Breakfast Tonight
I completed this painting just before the old Town Spa in Stoughton, Massachusetts closed, and offered it to the owner at a bargain basement price to hang in the new building. He declined. I was disappointed, but realized that not everyone has good taste in art. I sold the painting to a friend that shared the love of Town Spa Pizza. I included several of my old cars in the front of the building and included the car of the man who purchased the painting. His is to the far right in a No Parking area.