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ARTIST’S STATEMENT

TIME AND TRANSFORMATIONS

The visual has always been fundamental to my life.  Motivated by a strong curiosity, I use my eyes to make contact with the world around me. Art in various media, both two and three-dimensional, has been an integral part of my life since childhood.  Photography has been my primary focus for the past twenty-five years.   My artistic development has paralleled the development of my career.  As a psychoanalyst, art psychotherapist and visual artist, I am constantly immersed in the world of emotions, fantasy, dreams and the unconscious mind.  I exist in that borderland world between mental events and conscious reality.  For me, visual media is the best way to communicate the sensory, non-verbal mental terrain of my felt history.  The goal of my photography has not only been self-expression, but to evoke in the viewer a resonance with some of the unspoken and often not-yet-known internal experiences that lie at a very deep level of human existence.

As a photographer, I am more interested in interpretation than I am in producing faithful representations of the concrete world around me.  I work from an instinctive and intuitive perspective, attempting to find the balance between the personal, and a broader aesthetic meaning.

Birth and death are the primal themes of art and life.  The passage of time is an inescapable fact.  From conception onward, we begin our existence driven by a life force that propels us ever forward.  It is an invisible yet tangible energy that allows us to pass through each day, sometimes able to embrace love and beauty, as well as be oblivious to the hidden dangers that are always there.  Some dangers come from the outside and produce physical injury; some are internal, often caused by those closest to us who create the deepest and most penetrating wounds imaginable.  An acceptance of this journey and its inevitable end is a fact of our life cycle.

In the last few years, my inspiration has come directly from deep emotions, dreams and the unconscious mind.  I am drawn to Surrealism, because the imaginative and creative use of symbols and metaphors as a mode of communication allows me the most exploratory freedom.  Images that emerge from the preconscious mind and touch upon the deepest emotions are often those feelings most of us do not want to know about, or do no know how to access.  Surreal images, as strange as they are, can resonate enough with a viewer to open the gate to a myriad of startling associations and emotions that lead to the hidden and often forbidden aspects of the familiar.

As I enter the last third of my life, reflections about this passage are emerging spontaneously in my art.  Most readily accessible to me is an exquisitely felt vulnerability that has been my constant companion, helping me to make my way, both professionally and personally, through a lifetime of joyous celebrations and emotional storms.  In my work and my art, I have primarily focused attention on the other:  the emotions, dreams, fantasies dramas and the unconscious mind of another person’s life.  In recent years, my artistic attention has shifted to a more personal, idiosyncratic terrain.  The group of photos in the Still Life Portfolio is part of a continuing project based on autobiographical impressions.

With this work, it is my hope to generate an intimate conversation with the viewer, a conversation in which our human differences dissolve into common ground, and a place of deeper connection and reflection is created, where emotions can be identified, respected and thought about.

I chose black and white film for this project with the express purpose of using light, it’s presence and it’s absence, to enhance the emotional impact of the images.