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ARTIST STATEMENT

We live in a society where we are constantly bombarded by images from popular culture that both encourage and forbid a multitude of different behaviors. Long gone are the old days where our role in the family, community, and religion paves our path to self- discovery. Instead, our pluralistic world of limitless screens and ultra pop saturation leaves its people with so many modes of representation that they seem to have lost their own identity. My work exposes this phenomenon by unmasking specific cultural obsessions and their influence in constructing how we think about the contemporary individual. Despite the advanced culture we live in, the primal nature of these obsessions—sex, violence, money—may not always be conscious but is never lost from our human psyche. Drawing on sources from film, television, gaming, fine art, comic books, advertising and other media, my collages send viewers swimming through a brine of familiar imagery. These disparate images of childhood, fame, and controversy are recontextualized to all speak in the same ideological voice as they ride the line between condemnation and glorification. Rich chroma, recognizable characters, and densely articulated surfaces clash with the more troublesome conformist atmosphere than the playful compositions might suggest. By incorporating a nervous humor juxtaposing innocence and disturbance into the narratives on display, I seek to raise the question if we can escape the influences of these constant images when we are awash in models that conform so strongly to these ideas. If not, perhaps my paintings are merely portraits of what a century of mass consumerism and popular culture have done to replace artistic memory and the human spirit.