Art is a way to have long conversations about difficult things in a very short amount of time. With one image, one's comfort zone can be shattered, their reality changed, their tormented feelings validated and their silent voice heard. Art can disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed.
My latest body of work has been a continuing series focused on the victims of sexual assault and the harsh realities behind the action that I feel that society has yet to acknowledge. Unfortunately, sexual and physical violence is a main issue of our society today; but news articles that appear on social media and on our television screens seem to do a decent job of talking about the issue without really talking about it. Discussions tend to have a central focus on the perpetrator, or heroes of the community who step in to attempt to stop such acts of violence. How these acts affect the victim of such actions seems to be a reality that is too harsh for society to acknowledge.
With my work, my goal is to vocalize the feelings of the victim in a confrontational way though the human figure, My drawings are larger than life in scale, and presented in black and white charcoal medium so that a dramatic, high-contrast affect can be achieved. I believe that body language and facial expressions communicate feelings that are universal, and it is with this focus that I hope to educate society on the reality of sexual violence and challenge any preconceived notions that might be in place about the devastating affect that it has on the victim.
Artist Ai WeiWei has been a great influence on my goals as an artist. I greatly admire the way he is not afraid to stand up for the truths that need to be uncovered and spoken about in his repressive society. He has enemies, but he has been the voice of many of his fellow citizens. His artwork itself is beautifully created and aesthetically pleasing and intriguing, yet the message behind his work holds a meaning that causes the viewer to think, challenge his thought process, and see society in a different, more naked way. In WeiWei's fashion, I hope to continue to create bodies of work that reveal the naked truths about social injustices and social stigmas and challenge the hearts and minds of those in our society to help create a culture that is understanding and genuine towards our fellow man.