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Wall/Window/Mirror: 'I dwell in possibility'

Published on: 20 January, 2008


Self-Portrait, 1979, acrylic and tempera on paper, 5 7/8 x 7 5/8″, collection of the artist

Wall/Window/Mirror: “I dwell in possibility”

The paintings I enjoy are true to reality; honest about the fact that their surface is a wall no eye can penetrate. They seduce with materials and technique. At the same time I expect a painting to take me somewhere; usually through the magic of illusionism, converting that wall into a window upon other worlds. I believe such transformations can empower the viewer, providing a mirror to turn upon themselves. Wall, window, mirror: three expectations for painting. Emily Dickinson’s poem I dwell in possibility (#657) develops through these states. The poem passes from the concreteness of house and prose; dives through windows and doors through diaphanous cedars, and then springs through roof to open sky. In the first two stanzas we see interpenetrations of house and landscape, interior and exterior, and intimate and immense space which return and unite with the self in the third stanza. Wall, window, mirror; I seek these in my work.


Folded Self Portrait with Night I: Graphite, 2007, graphite on Fabriano paper, 4 1/4 x 12 1/4″, collection of the artist

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