First Impressions

The Akron Art Museum, Isroff Gallery, Akron, Ohio, August 1, 2015 - January 3, 2016

About This Project

Summit ArtSpace, Akron, Ohio.

My artwork is rooted in my concern for the environment’s current and future states as effected by climate change. I speak about this issue from personal observations of changes and phenomena in my home environments as well as in my travels. In June of 2009 I traveled to Ilulissat, Greenland to see the Jakobshavn Icefjord and hike on the Greenland ice sheet. I wanted to know if I could see the effects of global warming first hand. Mere steps onto the inland ice I was confronted with the evidence I sought—cryoconites, melt streams and lakes, and moulins plunging to the base of the ice sheet speeding annual area loss alarmingly. At the current rate it is possible that this ice sheet, in addition to half of the West Antarctic ice sheet, could be gone within 500 years. We have cast a carbon net over our world. I ask my viewers to consider, at what point we take responsibility for how we are changing the world? We have locked ourselves into a climate change. But we can effect the degree to which the climate change will be experienced in our future. How can we change our behaviors and habits to mediate the effects of climate change for our world’s future?

As an artist and professor I believe that it is essential that we always build upon past experience. Critical evaluation of my own work is vital to my studio practice. I end each project by asking myself what has worked well and what could work better. I begin each new effort by asking where my work is coming from and where it should go to help me move forward as an artist and an engaged individual. Each project is built upon the past and helps guide future endeavors.

The work exhibited in First Impressions draws from the last ten years of works which are based in my interest in the landscape and concern for the environment. It also draws upon my interest in printmaking and its history in communication, ephemera, and repetition. Wallpaper is decoration, but it is decoration that is a reflection of the period in which it was produced, selected, hung, and lived with. With the wallpaper that I produce I urge my viewers to ask themselves what their role is in the environment within which they have surrounded themselves? This wallpaper will be used to create the setting for a print-based installation that will exhibited at the Lost Coast Culture Machine in Fort Bragg, California November 1 – December 1, 2013.