“So What Sort of Paintings Do You Do?”

When I mention to people that I paint, the very next question invariably is “So what sort of paintings do you do?”

I find this question rather hard to answer.  Am I a Neo-Expressionist?  Am I a Post-Modernist?  Artistically speaking, what am I?  I have no idea.  In fact, I used to – and sometimes still do – think that I don’t have a discernable style.  As I state in my artist’s bio, I see myself as an artistic chameleon.  While artists generally have – or eventually develop – a distinct look and style, my approach, style, and final product are dependent largely on the subject and what inspired me at that moment.  I used to think that in some respects, no two paintings of mine are anything alike.

To not sound like a dilettante, I usually answer with conviction that my paintings fall somewhere between Pop Art and Modern Art.  I figure that’s a vague enough (non-)answer that covers a lot of artistic ground, and also satisfies the person asking the question.  

Friends and acquaintances who have watched my artistic progression over the past six or seven years have told me that I “have a definite style.”  When pressed further, I often get the lowest-common-denominator answer drenched with some degree of humor, “You paint women with big boobs.”

I laugh along.  However, more than half of my paintings have nothing to do with women.  Honestly, I wince at the over-simplification of my work as “tits-and-ass paintings.”  

I arrived at a more satisfactory realization and description as I redesigned my website earlier this year.  I admitted to myself that perhaps I do have a distinct style.  While my art does land at the intersection of Modern and Pop Art, more notable is its subject-driven nature and its underlying recurring themes.  My work tends to fall in one of four categories:  yes, women; NYC-centric urban themes; music; and stylized flowers.  Anything that doesn’t quite fit into these themes, falls in the one-off, catch-all “tangents” categories.  To ascribe strict artistic movements to my work is secondary and sometimes not even relevant.

I realized that perhaps the most defining aspect of my art - although not always readily apparent - is that I try to derive stylistic inspiration from high-fashion ads and photography, which I consider an art form in and of itself.  I try to turn the mirror on advertising and photography - and even the better aspects of Instagram - and deliver it back in paint form.  This is especially evident in my urban- and women-themed paintings, but finds its way into my other themes as well.

Be sure to check out the Paintings section of this website and drop me a line if you agree, disagree, or have any opinions.