In this body of work I’m revisiting a theme I’ve worked with in the past: paintings inspired by the wings of butterflies and moths. Since the pandemic hit, I’ve found myself gravitating towards beautiful things and wanting to create some of my own as a way of countering the anxiety and uncertainty I am experiencing.
Butterflies symbolize transformation. I’m hoping the dark times we’re living in will eventually give way to better times, the result of self-reflection born of isolation. The dark pandemic threw light, to a greater degree, on unfairnesses in our social structure. I’m hoping for change and growth, a metamorphosis of sorts.
Some of my happiest times as a child were spent roaming around the woods and fields of my grandparents’ farm catching butterflies—monarchs, tiger swallowtails, mourning clocks, yellow sulphurs, and some whose names I don’t know. “It is astounding how little the ordinary person notices butterflies, “ Vladimir Nabokov wrote.
This body of work takes its inspiration from these creatures. Of particular interest to me are the transparent glass wing butterflies. One can see right through them to the flowers and leaves they sit upon.
But my current work is not about the literal illustration of these insects. Only a few are recognizable as a particular species. Mostly I’m interested in color, line, form, shape and texture as formal elements. I consider the majority of the paintings to be verging on abstract art.
I’ve used a variety of mediums in this body of work such as watercolor, gouache, oil and acrylic paint. I’m interested in layering and transparency and working with different mediums to achieve this effect.