May 18 - 19 , Site: 226
1396 W. Hedding Street
San Jose, CA 95126
I am a self-taught assemblage artist and painter with lots of imagination.
I began making art seriously about ten years ago after taking a workshop from another assemblage artist. The workshop was free form and captivating, with interesting materials and salvaged junk provided. Completely inspired, I began studying the work of other assemblage artists and collecting materials. I spent hours trying to see how discarded things might fit together to make something beautiful and eerie. I worked on shadow boxes and sculptures whenever I wasn’t at my day job. Soon I began showing my work, and now I sell it about as fast as I can make it.
I continue to love working in assemblage, but a part of me always wanted to be a painter, too.
I made several false starts with painting, but didn’t know what or how I wanted to paint. I knew that realism wasn’t for me, but wasn’t sure where my place was. After some exploration, I found inspiration from outsider artists, especially those who put raw imagination into their work. There are no rules in this corner of the art world and you can do whatever you want as long as it comes from inside you and works.
I had a breakthrough after taking a workshop from the outsider artist Jesse Reno. He taught me an approach that is very freeing -- you start from the background, build up layers of interesting color and contrast, and then bring out the subject based on what you visualize there. You don’t start with the end in mind.
I’ve been using this approach on and off ever since. I love how the work comes together ?partly by chance and partly by design?. The results are interesting in a way I don’t think I could ever plan. Some of my best pieces come from turning the painting upside down and completely changing the orientation and subject matter. My style continues to evolve, and I am starting to include elements that might be considered more towards illustration or street art.
I want my art to engage and surprise viewers, and I think part of this includes pushing and surprising myself. When I start a new piece, I typically have no idea where it will take me. I have breakthrough moments along the way with plenty of mistakes that require rework. I think this is what makes my work interesting and surprising.