My work looks at the relationship between illusionism and abstraction - I play with the spatial properties of the painting through formal decisions of division, colour and light. I am interested in achieving optical illusion through the placement of flat geometric architectural shapes, fused with more organic forms and structures: underwater plants, internal cell like structures, costume, fabrics, decorative patterns, the tropical and exotic.
My paintings tap into a sense of otherness; worlds within worlds, mirroring and yet upsetting what is outside. I am keen to create spaces that cannot easily be contextualised, exploring settings that convey artifice; they are mysterious, disorientating, and kaleidoscopic. Through a use of vivid colour, rhythm and depth, I confront the viewer with an ambiguous sense of place.
The handmade and sense of touch play a critical part in my process. Each painting is a performative act and an enquiry into unknown space. I am not certain of what the outcome will be but interested in creating a particular type of environment through colour and shape, following an intuitive process. I start the painting freely with gestural mark making using acrylic paint, then overworking this with more geometric hard edged abstract forms. I use a specific kind of layering, inviting the viewer to look through each to the next, almost as a series of screens so that each layer of paint contrasts in style to the next and creates a dialogue between them.
I am interested in exploring the possibilities and limitations of paint - how applying it in particular ways can create a sense of dislocation, calling into question certain fundamental concepts such as space, time and identity. This questioning of pictorial structure, the layering that creates a tension in the work, also serves to break open and question structures in a wider sense; political, social and artistic. The work evolves ultimately from a genealogy of twentieth century abstraction, but I strongly believe that seeking new forms can create new meaning and relevance in contemporary painting.