Passages / Prints, Books and Drawings
I am an abstract artist in a city filled with realism.
I came to Firenze to experience, to learn, to see art and to make art. I am on sabbatical from teaching at Cape Cod Community College in Massachusetts. My goal in coming to Firenze is to study printmaking and book arts from a traditional western perspective and to integrate new ideas into my studio art classes. I have been fortunate to have been invited to be an artist in residence for the fall 2008 semester at Santa Reparata International School of Art. The studio I am working in is spacious, bright and airy. Print makers from all over the world have created art in this space.
I came to Firenze with no preconceived ideas; rather, I purposely chose to come here with little in the way of art supplies or reference materials. In that way I would remain open and respond to what I would see and experience.
I am primarily an abstract artist, influenced by space, color, texture and shapes. This is my language; this is how I express what I feel. Firenze has been a full visual experience for me of warm colors, rich textures, fading surfaces and weathered stone. The past is revealed in uneven layers and fragments of past civilizations. The art of the past speaks. There is beauty and grand architecture everywhere you turn. I am struck by the scale of the large doors, the inviting passages and the shadowy allies; there are magnificent sculptures and carvings adorning the facades of buildings and stones echoing the past. The arches encompass and surround. The doors enclose and protect.
The art of Michelangelo, Brunelleschi, Masaccio, Botticelli, da Vinci, Ghiberti and Giotto provide sacred spaces and stories of the past. I am in awe as I walk up the stairway to the library designed by Michelangelo, or climb the winding stairway to the top of the Duomo. I am surrounded by balance and harmony, classical proportions, symmetry and perspective which together forms a solid architectural cohesiveness. As an abstract artist I have created prints which echo fragments of the past contrasted with aspects of the present. The prints are not of a particular place but rather a synthesis of observations. They create their own architectural spaces of time and place and form a visual montage of my experience.
Art represents the best virtues of mankind and inspires great hope within me.
I would like to thank Rebecca Olsen for arranging my residency, it has been an extraordinary experience to live in Florence for three months and to work in wonderful studio spaces. A special thanks to Patricia Silva for her guidance and inspiration in making books and collaborative projects. Thank you to Suzanna for her support and watching over me. Thank you also to Marta and Carolina for showing me around in the early days and making sure that the studio was set up for me. I could not have been as comfortable without their continued help. In addition thanks to Brahim for all of his help. I would also like to thank the other students and faculty who gave friendship and encouragement during my residency.