[Mixed Media, December 2019 Original. 48 x 62"] After moving into the neighborhood, I realized I’d never seen Beverly Hills at night. I took my bicycle out for a night-ride seeing that several houses flooded their front lawns like headlights on a car. I thought about how strange it was to see a gallery of plants, shrubbery, and flowers lit like an outdoor sculpture garden at night. After going several blocks, I found this single flower in a sea of other well-lit vines. In this painting, I wanted to visualize the perspective of a plant exposed to a constant light. I was studying expressions of pain in art at the time and thought Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud would be fun to collaborate with. This painting mixes their styles with my own.
(Mixed Media, November 2019 Original. 38 x 53.5") I made a pit stop in Sedona Arizona last year as I was moving my whole life between Austin and Los Angeles. The landscape in Sedona has always looked alien-like to me with its pastel green cacti, bright blue skies, and red-orange sand that looks to me like brown sugar. I felt like this view from Cathedral Rock explained in vivid detail just how strange this terrain was to someone like me from Texas.
(Mixed Media, August 2020 Original. 18 x 27") When I lived in LA, I often traveled outside of my neighborhood walking to other neighboring cities like West Hollywood or Century City. This painting features the power lines that connect the borders between Beverly Hills and West Hollywood near the Beverly Center mall. The original image was taken in November of 2019 when a flurry of pedestrians, cars, and shoppers would be in a commotion below. In this painting, I felt the need to mirror the energy of what it felt like to live in Los Angeles at the height of its economic success in 2019. It was hard for me to imagine just how much power was running through this part of a city with 8 million people. I wanted to visualize the symbolic flow of this frenetic energy and communication through the power-lines that helped create such an iconic city.
(Giclee on Canvas, September 2020 Original. 38 x 50.5") Since its birth after the Mexican-American war of 1846, San Francisco has been through two major fires, a bubonic plague (1900-1904), and several major earthquakes. With so much destruction, I was surprised to find that "The City" has only one major cemetery. After researching the biggest natural disaster where over 3000 people were killed (1906 earthquake), I found that many of the bodies were promptly buried in major parks or open land throughout the city. A firsthand account of personal stories from survivors, rescuers, and eyewitnesses paints a grim image of a city of several thousands of people potentially still buried in its post-disaster foundations: “Whenever a body was found it was buried immediately without any formality whatever and, as these burials were made at widely separated parts of the city by different bodies of searchers, who did not even make a prompt report to headquarters, considerable confusion resulted in estimating the number of casualties and exaggerated reports resulted.” At the time, the official death toll was at 500 people buried but the modern account puts it at approximately 3000. This means potentially more than 2500 people are still buried and scattered throughout modern day San Francisco. In this painting, I wanted to visualize the organic growth and resilience of such a majestic city like San Francisco and how the unpredictable disasters it’s faced in its 173 year history is often altered by time and aggressive real estate. Heavy influences were on historic pictures, earthquake survival stories, and the theme of orange and pink hues painted on buildings throughout the city.