I have found beauty in each piece of fabric or clothing I have painted. The act of recording something as simple and everyday as cloth on the ground has called upon all of my resources as an artist - there is rhythm, color, negative and positive spaces, directional movements, light, weight, history and always the picture plane to attend to. These objects, which have found their form through chance and gravity, have been open to both abstraction and metaphor. Whereas one might echo a body another might have a feeling of weightlessness. One canvas might communicate the ease with which it was painted and another show the whole battle that gave rise to the final image.
I have stayed with this series because it has continued to unfold before me. I've been chasing down answers with a brush in hand. One of the biggest surprises has been how drawing and painting have begun to inhabit the same surface. For many years I have worked with the idea that drawing and painting are two separate activities, that they each make a different kind of space. Line has appeared in these paintings with an urgency that I couldn't avoid (though I tried to in the beginning). Whether it is a painting seen through a drawing, a line woven through an image, a painting left with nothing but a colored drawing or masses of color eliminating all line, I have had to try to let these two different ways of recording an image work together.
Another new challenge this series has presented me with has been the single object in the rectangle. In the past I have enjoyed the cacophony of many objects crowded together in my still lives. But this series has often been about the central image and the relationship to its environment, itself, its parts and to the proportion of the canvas. While my paintings are still involved with complexity, I think gravity has a new kind of hold on my work. This is a mystery that is still unfolding.
I encourage you to give the work in this show some of your time, let these mysteries unfold or elude you. This work took time to make, I assume it will take time to be seen, and hopefully it will reward you as only painting can.
Thomas Masters Gallery, 2003