One of my first paintings, based on the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, where Orpheus goes to the underworld to retrieve his beloved Eurydice. “Sacrifice” is a large theme, it can be tragic or holy or many things in between. The word history of sacrifice means to make sacred. For me the woman in these myth based paintings is also Mother Earth or Mother Nature, who is being sacrificed. My raw approach to painting presents an unexpected juxtaposition of images. As I edit, I allow essential elements from each layer to remain visible, in this painting, for example , the double male image.
From the Series called, "Roman Ruins" painted after spending the summer in Italy, visiting all of the art that I had previously only seen in photographs. The Great Earth Mother is releasing a blood curdling howl in response to the outrageous disrespect, which she is suffering at the hands of mankind.
Also part of the series, "Roman Ruins" painted following my summer visit to Italy, this work was inspired by Michelangelo's sculptures, called Captive, where the figures are being released from the marble. The mermaid, also a captive, of the water, is drawn to the sculptured male figure.
While working with dance movement, I kept turning this as I painted it on this square format, so it can be viewed from any of the four sides. I observed the model from above looking down at her as she moved. Based on the Greek myth where the Furies evolve into the Eumenides, anger is pacified, transformed into creative energy. The upper more translucent figure represents a feminine healing presence.
Wanting to get more movement into my paintings, this painting was based on photographs taken of me jumping on a trampoline. When I painted this piece, I was trying to visually capture the experience of jumping continuously through space.
Expressing entrapment and longing, like the mermaid in "Captive," Persephone is reaching out from her struggle with Hades, god of the underworld, who tricked her into leaving Demeter, her Earth Mother and staying with him for half of every year. a mythological explanation of the seasons.
Based on a self portrait done during my 1998 residency in New York City, combined with the Getty Kouros, the central figure is stepping forward between times, epochs, from darkness into light. In this 10 x 12 ft. four panel altarpiece I am conjuring up female images of strength and healing from traditional cultures.
The Annunciation Series was based on a dream I had, in which a voice told me that I was pregnant with seven babies. I protested, saying that I was past my childbearing years. The voice insisted and I said, in that case I will give them up for adoption. The voice said that I may want to reconsider as two of them are angels! The donkeys in this series are protectors.
An early painting in “Our Lady of the Roses” Series, the transparent figures, a child clinging to a faceless but very rooted mother figure. Referencing early psychological studies done of monkeys with surrogate mothers made of wire or cloth. Behind them flows a river of roses.
Based on Charles Illgen’s photographs documenting our performance piece.