We live within a social construct of categories that limits the true scope of personal experiences. I explore the complex nature of self, class, and gender roles with the bounds of social biases and the struggle of hierarchy within ourselves and relationships. Societal bounds limit our fluidity as humans and force us to identify as one or another. We consciously and unconsciously seek to fit into the confinements of these bounds. Yet, our emotions and thoughts are at a constant battle, fighting to resolve false ideals and socially imposed limitations. Often, we ignore that the “self’ is truly multifaceted. Emotions run into and alongside each other at all times. The constant fluctuation of thoughts and responses to our environment have little definition. Allowing for a perfect subject to investigate.
Historically, the painted female form is examined from a male perspective. In the past century women, artists have been actively reclaiming what is rightfully ours. Each analysis is different when paired with personal experience, creating a unique lens of self-exploration.
Individually one identifies with multiple roles; our dysfunctional society prioritizes men, light skin, and wealth so much that we take on these ideals and internalize. In reality, a combination of masculine and feminine exists in everyone, each function presenting in different ways. In utilizing the male and female forms to represent these roles, I examine the internal and external ideas of class and gender. In the moments of intimacy, there is a mixture of focus on the moment, feelings of love, pleasure, distractions, insecurities, etc. I intend to capture the duality of focus.
The most recent paintings are a direct response to our current social and political climate. In coping and processing the pandemic, ongoing racial injustices, government-supported white supremacy, and overall mass confusion of information, I found myself struggling to define my emotional response and thoughts. While looking for inspiration to paint and speak upon these significant issues, the most honest answer was the dynamics of my emotions. Spanning the entire spectrum, some became more dominant than others. In my limited social setting, I found it difficult to completely suppress what was naturally bubbling to the top.
My investigation of the female figure attempts to effectuate the abstraction of self. Paint removes certain restraints in how we communicate and process information but relies heavily on categorizing. Through layering, abstraction, and implied mark-making of the traditional and non-traditional paintbrush, color and activity construct a language to address the notion of multiplicity within myself, breaking the bounds of these false constructs.