Looking at People Looking at Art
When I walked into my studio In the summer of 2017, I was obsessed with images of people looking at art. I'd start by making drawing from cellphone photos I'd taken of people in museums in New York. A few things about this particular subject really stayed with me: bodies interacting with other bodies in these large box-like spaces; the relationship of the figures to the often iconic artwork the were viewing (an interesting problem to find a painterly language for communicating that artwork); and the ubiquitous presence of the cellphone as a mediator in people's viewing. Cellphones have disrupted the conventional function of the viewer's gaze; looking is not complete unless it is documented with a photograph, experiences do not matter unless they are recorded with a selfie. The images for my paintings were all generated by my cellphone photo diary habit.
The paintings are all made with acrylic, acrylic gouache and pastel, with a pentimento of collage material underneath. The collage adds a layer of cultural noise, disrupting the illusionism with reference to a world beyond the space depicted.