EVERY WORK OF ART HAS A STORY
Below is the voiceover text from the video - the story of Emergence from the beginning.
Every work of art has a story.
Have you ever traveled so far down a path that it felt too late turn back? Have you ever had everything you'd ever worked for, but felt like you were living someone else’s life? In 2013, after six years of college, three degrees, and seven successful years in my field, I left my career in research behind to live a creative life.
Terrified, yet liberated, I decided to open a window and commercial cleaning business while I tried to figure out my purpose. Starting from scratch at age 30 - this is where the story begins.
In 2014 I was cleaning a screen printing warehouse when I had a realization. As I scrubbed a wooden table, my arms covered in ink, it dawned on me that this filthy environment was utterly filled - with art.
Suddenly the spilled ink on the table was a beautiful painting. Vibrant compositions filled the walls, floors, trashcans, and sinks where screen printing ink had been collecting over the years. And I began photographing the ink, trash, plastic, and debris.
These photographs were the beginning of what would later be called, Emergence. But what exactly had emerged?
I spent months exploring the photographs, and one kept catching my eye. It looked like a satellite photo of Earth, so I wondered what would happen if I duplicated and flipped this image and stitched the corners together with a shared center point.
Duplication and symmetry completely transformed the image, so I applied this method to the other photographs. Suddenly all of this trash seemed like it had something to say. Symmetry made the abstract more comprehensible, yet far more mysterious.
I gradually narrowed over 800 photographs down to 88. I then applied this symmetry to each photo all four ways. The total rose to 352. I arranged and rearranged them in countless configurations. And it became an obsession. What did they want to become?
I traveled down many rabbit holes researching alchemy, Jungian psychology, science, and astronomy - notebooks scattered across my studio filled with the ramblings of an artist unhinged. And I felt like I was going mad. Would anyone else see what I was seeing?
I first worked categorically, organizing the photos into vertical columns. And as the groupings became more coherent, I realized there were themes emerging horizontally across categories. This is when my work became an enigma - a puzzle that I had created yet also had to solve.
After much contemplation and experimentation, the 352 photos became 48. Emergence is the 4-series, 48-piece collection that resulted from this process. While each work stands alone, each also falls into a specific place on the matrix.
Afflatus is defined as, “an impulse of creative inspiration or power considered to be of divine origin.” This collection of work emerged from something outside of me, something seeking order and regeneration. And each piece embodies the transformation of chaos and randomness into something of beauty, meaning, and mystery.
Even more than artist or creator, I see myself as a seeker and a seer. At its heart, Emergence is an experiment in finding meaning in the abstract and letting art come forth on its own terms. Sometimes with enough openness and receptivity at the right time, beauty can arise from an unexpected place. Art can be a discovery, an unfolding, an awakening - an Emergence.