This new body of work is the culmination of where I am today as an artist combined with getting back to my roots. As a former graphic designer, I use this training and experience to craft my discipline of book arts. Since I self-publish this work, I end up with a lot of printer proofs that I save and use as the base elements that begin the Urban Botanicals. I also embed city-block map grids into the base art using different types of twine that are either left in place or cut away as the piece evolves. This is a very laborious process that builds up many layers of recycled materials along with various types of mixed media creating a very healthy amount of visual chaos.
Using additive and subtractive methods, I begin the reduction process by pruning and simplifying the composition keeping the areas of texture that excite me. It does not matter that much, if not all, of the photos and printer proofs are buried under layers of paint and mixed media. It is the presence and energy of these elements that enrich the surface and add to the history of the piece. I see this work as archaeological in nature — similar to the way that civilizations are built on top of each other. Through this direction in the Elemental Series, I am forging a new footprint that is leading me to a path of both discovery and coming home.
The Urban Botanicals will be on view this Friday evening, April 7th, 5:30-8:30pm at the April First Friday Show Opening @ Area 61 Gallery — 61 East Main Street, Southside, Chattanooga.