Human experience is plagued by an inherent incompleteness—both perception and memory being naturally imperfect, undeniably inexact. It is in our nature to yearn for completion, for narrative wholeness—to seek to fill in the gaps. Craving familiarity, we long to connect ourselves with other people through shared experience. Memories expressed by one person may reanimate long-forgotten details and events for others as their minds strive to forge these connections and to satisfy these voids.
I have always been interested in how identity is tangled up in past experience. We all have a notion of who we are by name, age, and occupation; but who and what I really am is the total amount of all of my experiences, and my later remembrances of those events. The subjective nature of sensory perception imbues our experience of daily life with a fundamental incompleteness—because the human brain can only process a limited amount of information at a time, our every moment is always subject to omission as well as misinterpretation and embellishment by the imagination or by emotion. Each day consists of roughly twenty thousand such moments—defined as the few seconds wherein the brain records an experience. In turn, each subsequent recalling of these experiences is subject to repression, convolution, and dissipation. We rarely remember neutral moments, only those that register as significantly positive or negative. I am fascinated by the notion of the gaps left by these absences of information, these holes within the structure of our past and present lives.
The intaglio process is integral to this work: as the image develops, a physical record of each action and decision appears on the plate—whether additive or subtractive. It allows me to maintain a balance between careful composition and pure intuition as I explore the interplay of deliberate mark-making with experimentation and unanticipated results. In this way, the physical process of creating each plate parallels the oscillating, simultaneously creative and erosive qualities of memory formation and recall.
Created through a process of editing, erasure, and exaggeration, my recent works allude to the intractable nature of remembrance, creating open-ended, implied narratives that invite a visceral response in a way that parallels storytelling—we often take a small fragment of someone else’s personal anecdote and re-form our own memory in reaction to its familiarity. We never take that person’s entire account and find our own experience to be identical, rather we are inspired by certain details which allow us to forge a connection between that person’s experience and our own related one. In the same way, we choose and appropriate certain aspects of other people’s images, while projecting our own memories back onto them. The simultaneous presence and absence within my work calls for this kind of interaction—the familiarity of the visible draws one in, but the polysemy of the invisible, the erased, the absent, impels the viewer to provide a context for this moment that conforms to his or her particular identity and memories. In this way I seek to propel the viewer toward recovery of some forgotten bit of personal experience, a narrowing of some lacunal void.
I always feel an immense sense of victory when I suddenly remember something from my childhood—a tangible, almost physical sensation of information flowing like liquid back into a previously empty chasm in my memory. It is accompanied by a feeling that I’ve regained some small part of my identity that may otherwise have been lost forever. This sensation is something I hope to share through my work, creating a sort of visual archive of the kinds of shared situations and moments that interweave and overlap to make our experience human.
2010 Master of Fine Arts, Printmaking. Ohio University, Athens.
2006 Bachelor of Fine Arts, Printmaking. Summa Cum Laude. University of South Dakota, Vermillion.
2011 Instructor of Printmaking, Ohio University, Athens.
Courses taught: Intaglio Printmaking, Lithography, Relief Printmaking (2 courses,) and Advanced Printmaking (2
2007-2010 Teaching Assistant, Ohio University, Athens.
Courses taught as Instructor of Record: Descriptive Drawing, Lithography and Intaglio Printmaking
Courses as Teaching Assistant: Print Special Topics, Intaglio Printmaking (2 courses,) Papermaking, Lithography,
Serigraphy, and Relief Printmaking
2007 Drawing Instructor, South Dakota Governor’s Camp, University of South Dakota, Vermillion.
Course taught: Beginning Drawing Workshop
2011 Purchase Award. Delta National Small Prints Exhibition. Bradbury Gallery, AR
2010 Purchase Award and Juror’s Award. Sixty Square Inches, Purdue University
Full Graduate Teaching Assistantship. Ohio University.
2009 Honorable Mention Award. MAPC Members Juried Exhibition, Univ. of Southern Indiana
Student Award. Impressions: Printmaking, New Hampshire Institute Of Art
Full Graduate Teaching and Gallery Assistantship. Ohio University.
2008 GSS Graduate Student Original Works Grant. Ohio University
GSS Graduate Student Travel Grant. Ohio University
Harry Z and Grace R Foster Memorial Scholarship. Ohio University
Full Graduate Teaching and Gallery Assistantship. Ohio University
2007 Purchase Award and Juror’s Award. Sixty Square Inches, Purdue University
Full Graduate Assistantship. Ohio University. Teaching Assistantship and Gallery Assistantship
2006 Golden Key National Honor Society Membership
Oscar Howe Art Student Scholarship. University of South Dakota
Printmaking Award. Stilwell Student Awards Exhibition, USD
2002 National Merit Finalist Scholarship and Presidential Alumni Scholarship. University of South Dakota