ARTIST STATEMENT Objects, things that I could hold in my hand or put in my pocket, have always had a life of their own in my imagination and a powerful resonance in my world. The small toy that my cousin played with when she visited, the hat that my Father wore, the rock I always tripped on in the path to the mailbox, the coffee cup my girlfriend drank from; all these things, these inanimate, mute objects, acquired and then carried in them a force and an energy through their association with the peopled world. But it is the existence that they possess of their own, their own life in the universe of objects and the world itself, that is even more mysterious and beguiling. I know their world has a very different sense of time, a patience and a calm that is unknown in the world of people. I can put a bowl on the table, and I can walk out of the room, leave for a day, a month, or a lifetime; each and every second filled with my struggling and straining or laughing and indulging. And when I walk back into that room, that bowl will still be sitting there on the table where I put it, dusty perhaps, but unchanged, not so much waiting as simply, and profoundly, existing. Objects exhibit a harmony, a peace and a co-existence with the world that makes the world I inhabit seem frantic and a bit absurd by comparison.
This respect for and connection to objects and their perceived world underlies my pursuits as a still life painter. At the same time, the things in the paintings are there primarily to fulfill the demands of the painting itself, much the way actors are in a play to fulfill the demands of the script. Any symbolic or metaphoric intention is subservient to the formal demands presented by the specific needs of each painting. I am trying to hit a particular visual note through the combined actions and interactions of the formal elements in the painting. The paintings are an attempt to construct or discover a set of relationships that are harmonious and at the same time imbued with a hint of tension. This formal tension is heightened by embedding these abstract qualities within the illusion of the image. In each painting I attempt to strike a balance between a clear and convincing realism and a clear and charged formal construction and in so doing create a remarkable event out of the most ordinary of circumstances.
EDUCATION 1987 MFA in Painting/Printmaking, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, CT 1981 BFA in Printmaking, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI
SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2016 George Billis Gallery, NY 2014 New Paintings, George Billis Gallery, Los Angeles, CA 2013Unsold: Grenades, Cute Animals, and Bad Apples, Dykes Library Gallery, Kansas University Medical Center, Kansas City, KS 2012 New Paintings, George Billis Gallery, Los Angeles, CA 2011 Recent Paintings, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 2009 Life/Like, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 2006 Knots and Unknowns, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 2003 New Paintings, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 2001 New Paintings, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 1999 Apples And Oranges, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 1996 Him, Her, and Other Paintings, The Dolphin Gallery, Kansas City, MO
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 2017 A Surrender Against Reality, University of Missouri Kansas City, Kansas City, MO 2017 Still Life Winter Collective, Weinberger Fine Art, Kansas City, MO 2017 International Contemporary Furniture Fair, Jacob Javits Center, NY, NY 2016 Chlorine, All is Fair Gallery, Kansas City, MO 2015 Summer Group Exhibition, George Billis NY 2015 Red Dot Art Fair, Miami 2013Indelible Impressions: The Politics of the Social in Contemporary Art, Fort Wayne Museum of Fine Art, Fort Wayne, Indiana 2013 Colorful Antics, George Billis Gallery, Los Angeles, CA 2012 21st Century Still Life: The Painted Image, Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, Hagerstown, Maryland 2012 Color Country: 3 Artists, Central Missouri State University, Warrensburg, Missouri 2011 Sosabeol International Art Expo, Flame Show 2011, Seoul, South Korea 2011 The Dining Room Project, Kansas City Jewish Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO 2010 The Things Themselves, Pelham Art Center, New York, NY 2006 The Peninsula Show, Carl Schlosberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles, CA 2005 Go Figure 2005, George Billis Gallery, New York, NY 2005 Winter Group Exhibition, George Billis Gallery LA, Los Angeles, CA 2004 The Peninsula Show 2004, Carl Schlosberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles, CA 2004 Inaugural Group Exhibition, George Billis Gallery LA, Los Angeles, CA 2003 The Peninsula Show 2003, Carl Schlosberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles, CA 2002 Out of the Nursery, Byron Cohen Gallery, Kansas City, MO 2002 Invitational Group Exhibition, D’Lan Contemporary ArtSpace, Brisbane, Australia 2001 Post Realism, The Dirt Gallery, Kansas City, MO 2000 Charlotte Street Fund Exhibition, Kansas City Artists Coalition, Kansas City, MO 2000 Dealer’s Choice, Robert Kidd Gallery, Birmingham, MI 1999 Works by Tom Gregg, Art and Design Gallery, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield, MO 1998 Summer Group Exhibition, Katarina Rich Perlow Gallery, New York, NY 1998 The Art Exchange Show, 2 Broadway, New York, NY 1997 National Juried Exhibition, First Street Gallery, New York, NY 1997 Group Exhibition, The Dolphin Gallery, Kansas City, MO 1996 Summer Painting Exhibition, Dorry Gates Gallery, Kansas City, MO 1995 The Chautauqua National Exhibition of American Art, Chautauqua Art Association, Chautauqua, NY 1995 The Halpert Biennial National Exhibition, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC
AWARDS 2000 Year 2000 Grant, Charlotte Street Fund, Kansas City, MO 1994 M-AAA/NEA Visual Arts Fellowship Award, In Recognition of Outstanding Artistic Achievement in Painting 1992 Summer Faculty Fellowship, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield, MO 1992 Residency at The Yaddo Colony, Saratoga Springs, NY 1987 The Elizabeth Canfield Hicks Award, Yale University, New Haven, CT 1984 Residency at The MacDowell Colony, Peterborough, NH
WORKS IN COLLECTIONS American Century Companies, Kansas City, MO BlueCross BlueShield, Kansas City, MO Chattahoochee Valley Art Museum, LaGrange, GA Evansville Museum of Arts & Science, Evansville, IN Federal Reserve Bank, Kansas City, MO Hallmark Fine Arts Collection, Kansas City, MO Harvard University, Boston, MA H&R Block Corporate Collection, Kansas City, MO Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS Pfizer Corporation, New York, NY Sasktel Corporation, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada Sprint Corporate Collection, Overland Park, KS
TEACHING EXPERIENCE 1996-2002 Drawing and Painting, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO 1989-1994 Assistant Professor, Drawing, Painting, Intaglio Printmaking and 2-Dimensional Design, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield, MO 1988-1989 Drawing Resource Instructor, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan 1987 Drawing Instructor, B.F.A. Foundation Program, Portland School of Art, Portland, ME
RELATED EXPERIENCE 2003 Curated 2 Group Exhibitions, The Bank Gallery/Urban Culture Project, Kansas City, MO 1998-2001 Curated 12 Group Exhibitions, Old Post Office Space, Kansas City, MO 1990, 1993 Manuscript Reviewer, Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, Inc.