Coffee cups are not the most complex of subjects, though anything can be made challenging. After a solid year of drawing coffee cups I realized that it was the ritual of going to a coffee shop and meeting a friend or sitting alone to ruminate on your thoughts and focus that I was attempting to capture. I try to capture the details of coffee and tea cups because they are a reminder of connection. If there's anything I believe in it is the power of connection- that it lies at the basis of forming strong bonds and feelings of inner peace.
I care about connection. I believe that creating community and understanding each other is the best way for all of us to grow as a society. The foundations for this belief were laid by the Peace and Justice Studies degree I earned at Tufts University. I've done a lot of thinking and reflecting on many of the problems in the world and am always trying to leverage my art to contribute in some small way to solutions. My art practice was solidified by my degree in Studio Art at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston where I learned from talented and deeply caring professors, many of whom I'm very lucky to still know. I grew up in San Diego, went to University in Boston, and now live in Denver, where I highly appreciate the rampant coffee culture.
The feeling of capturing through drawing and painting is incredible. I am able to lose the chatter of thoughts and let my eye translate what I think is directly to my hand. Then I find out that some funny detail has been added or there's a pithy phrase I came up with as soon as I decided to add text. Overall, I love creating my art because it brings me so much joy to show other people a moment of calm and sacredness in stillness. At first, I thought that creating more beauty for the world was the most important thing to do as an artist.
As I learned more about the history of art and the history of the world I realized that art was just thinking externalized in an easily digestible way. Sharing my thoughts became the most important thing. Then it was creating feelings in the viewers of my work that would lead them towards empathy, connection and community. Towards love.
Even as a small child I loved making art- I once told my mother when she was trying to teach me to tie my shoes that I was an ARTIST, not the "shoe-tying type." Whatever that means. It was the Summer that I was thirteen though that drawing just took hold of me- I drew every single day, for most of the day. I had kept sketchbooks for a couple of years before that but in that Summer I made more progress in skill than I ever had. My cousin Jim, who was old enough to already have a full time job, would leave a book cover or a Yu-Gi-Oh card or some other visual content out for me to draw and set the expectation that I would have made a faithful copy of it by the time he got home from work. This was hugely influential to me, making art and feedback a daily practice.
See a list of my previous exhibitions here
See my senior thesis work here
See other past work here