My current gouache and watercolor paintings reflect a continuing theme of my work: containment. Interior spaces with doorways, windows, cabinets, and then dish drainers and stove tops, along with the determining frame of the painting itself, play out the idea of enclosure.
In my Brooklyn series I’m especially concerned with domestic room spaces, exploring interior/exterior relationships with views through windows out into enclosed urban outdoor spaces, nature confined and controlled in backyards and gardens.
In these paintings I enjoy the tension between spatial depth and surface pattern, the geometry of flat planes and lines of perspective, playing with a sense of peering through or past a frontal layer back into space. My inclination is to explore the gaps, the fraying or partial disintegration of the image, necessitating a certain amount of assembly of the picture through the disturbances in the field.
The small gouache paintings of dish drainers are part of a series I’m calling Kitchen Clutter. I started these paintings thinking of them as close-ups of the Brooklyn images, but they have taken on their own direction. I’m not sure what attracts me to this subject. Apparently, I am celebrating daily life, especially the domestic rituals that keep a household from falling into utter chaos.
Perhaps the meditative, repetitive quality of the task of washing dishes is not a far stretch from the activity of painting the scene. There is enjoyment in bringing order, even harmony, to a random arrangement of objects, shapes and colors.
On another level, the objects depicted — dishes, pots and pans, and especially cups and glasses — can be seen as stand-ins for the deep human connections made in conversation in the kitchen.