Statement 2017

My recent body of work has been an exploration of the interaction between memory and liminal or transitory places. Drawing on the idea of the ‘non-place’, these liminal spaces are often encountered while traveling from one place to another. I paint from my own extensive experiences of travel and my memories of being suspended in transitory places. I aim to warp the viewer’s understanding of the painted space by creating shaped canvases that distort the surface.


Making and Meaning


What is the relationship between an artist’s creative practice and the meaning of a work of art? There is a long tradition in Western society that considers artistic creativity to be inspired. Artistic inspiration offers to the meaning of a work of art a certain authority that it otherwise would not have.  The inspired artist works in a frenzy of passion and madness as he or she becomes a channel for otherworldly intimations (see Plato’s Phaedrus for a classic description).  The idea of inspiration is ancient, but it was highly influential in the 19th century, and even today the language of inspiration is a popular way to talk about the making of art.

In the 1960s, a form of painting called Photo Realism (also Hyperrealism, Superrealism, and others) developed that turned the notion of the inspired artist on its head.  Many Photo Realists, especially those seminal figures such as Malcolm Morley…

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Communication and Self: The work of Tigran Tsitoghdzyan

Tigran Tsitoghdzyan’s work revolves around identity and communication in today’s society. There are many things I like about him, some of which even reflect my own practice.

Although his paintings are all on square or rectangle canvases the circular forms are similar in their voyeuristic aspect.  I do wonder if the square canvas add something (such as more a voyeuristic attitude) or if the wall behind a circular canvas plays the same role.




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Assessment Requirements

Documentation of Current Artwork:

1. Choice of Subject Artifact and Initial Response

2. Translation of Ideas and Material Exploration

3. The Curved Canvas Adventures

4. How Field projects have influenced studio practice

5. Participation in Informational Critique

Contextualization, Artworks and Artists Important to my own practice:

1. Key Concept Lecture and its Influence

2. Primary Contextual Reference and its Influence

3. Key Contextual Reference for Site/Venue and Influence

4. Key Contextual Reference for Field and its Influence

5. Secondary Context for Subject

Field Reflection:

Field Project 1 Reflection

Field Project 2 Reflection

2nd Year Field reflection

3. Key Contextual Reference for Site/Venue and Influence

In our site/venue project we drew upon the influence of many artists and artworks meant to bring art into the public realm. In relation to this project my primary interest was collaborative art and bringing  “non-artists” into a frame of mind to become artwork in their own right.

The Sketchbook Project is a crowd-sourced library thousands of artists’ sketchbooks from artists around the world. They also have a digital library making accessible millions of artworks.

Tunisian Collaborative Painting also built into this project idea somewhat.In this type of painting you have 3-6 people all working together at the same time on the same canvas. 

These two main ideas, sketchbooks and multiple people working on one object were the focus points of the art experience I initiated.


5. Secondary Context for Subject

Knowing that I wanted to use both 2D and 3D surfaces in my final collection there were a few hiccups. The first hurdle when trying to portray your own perception is surface. The things we see are three dimensional, but our retinas and pupils are curved. Do you try to create a surface that echoes the physiology of the human body or do you take a traditional surface and stretch the perceived image to fit?

Nathan Walsh has crated some of my favorite 2D painting portraying 3D experiences. I’ve been following his work for a few years now and his cityscapes only get better. His understanding of vanishing points and translating perspective is insane (in a good way).

Duplicating the flatness of a photograph or a series of stitched together photographs is of no interest to me. A camera lens will have a fixed focal length and a software package will obey a set of algorithms. The reproduction in paint of these mechanical processes negates the human experience of responding to the world. -Quote from Walsh’s website

He uses a magnified variation of 4 or 5 point perspective…Complicated but doable..

4. Key Contextual Reference for Field and its Influence

Riverscapes & Sequences

“Riverscapes” meaning taking inspiration from the Taff river, and “Sequences” as in photography and printmaking. Although it was primarily a skill set I learned, context (as usual) is expected to play a part. Within this project we looked at many printmakers and photographers using the river and water to express an idea or a state of being.

Now while we were exploring methods of typography, photography, printmaking and mono-printmaking, I was reading a book that permeated my thoughts to an extreme level. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is a novel by Jonathan Safran Foer that explores the aftermath of the 9/11 World Trade Centre attacks through the eyes of a 9-year-old boy. The story intelligently written and very gripping, but more than that the book is designed in an extremely creative and intuitive way. So much of the non-linear, non-uniform, non-mediocre aspects of the style are incredibly reminiscent of my own journal keeping and note taking. That in turn lends to the authenticity and believability of a 9-year-old narrator. (…draw your own conclusions about my writing…) The extremely creative use of text still sits in the back of my mind.

Figurative Modeling

This option was also largely skills based. It was especially so for those who don’t work in clay or ceramics often if at all. In learning about the world of ceramics we were introduced to many artists that we may not have thought about much before. Of course even though we were dealing in ceramics, that does not require us to take inspiration from only the realm of ceramics. Antony Gormley, Akio Takamori, Christie Brown, Marc Quinn, and Malene Hartmann Rasmussen all influenced not only the creative process but the ideas on which the objects for the project were built. Although we worked in groups to some degree, we each had our own ideas about ideas and context. Within my research the thing that peaked my imagination and interest more than anything is the sheer concept of humanity. (Not going to fall into the deep well that is the philosophy of self and humanity… I’ve made that mistake before.)

So how do artists express humanity? I’m still not sure really how to answer this question. Some express the physical sensation of the experience. The way I tried was to contrast the physical human form with that of animal. If I were to continue with this project for more than just the few weeks we had I would delve further into how were the line is between human and other. If you paint a smiley face onto a box do you call it human? Or if you sculpt a human body but rather than a head to you give it a cardboard box, what do you call the whole. In science fiction there is the term “humanoid” to describe creatures bipedal in nature with a skeleton similar in nature to our own. It’s the same term used by settlers a few hundred years ago in reference to indigenous peoples. But ‘humanoid’ is just an unspecific scientific term for ‘human-ish’.

So how to you depict a transition that doesn’t even have a name?