Janus is the name of a Roman deity that symbolized transitions in both space and time. The guardian of portals simultaneously surveyed the past and future while standing in the present. Because change and passages are recurring themes in my work, it is an appropriate name for me.
The picture plane is an art portal, an opening much like a window or electronic display, bounded by the edges of the frame. I try to breach the invisible barrier between my art and the viewer, much like breaking the fourth wall in contemporary theatre.
Although I explored many traditional artistic media, digital art became my chosen genre. When I retired, I planned to continue to work as I had in advertising, working out the compositional problems with digital layouts and then transferring the results to traditional media. Then I realized, that for me, all of the creativity was in those decisions. What remained, was unimaginative draftsmanship.
As a skilled photo retoucher, it was a natural transition to fauxtography. Because the subject matter was changed to tell a new story, my images were no longer photographs. In 2015, I challenged myself further by working sans photo. A lens did not capture the original pixels, but the result truly emulated photography. With irony in mind, I dubbed this technique “True Fauxtography.” The resulting series, Anachronisms, tested new skills with each piece and took hundreds of hours to complete.
Anachronisms reflects society’s transition from an analog to a digital lifestyle and the accompanying passage in time. While still operational, all of the archaic objects (that are my subjects) have been made obsolete by digital technology. Their replacements are the more convenient apps on our smartphones. I used an OpArt pattern behind the objects to represent the binary nature of the underlying code that took control.
For years I worked with a standard mouse and desk display with my visual focus disconnected from my hand. Now I can work directly on my work displayed on the screen of my iPad. I also recently added the ability to control pen pressure by learning to use a graphics tablet as an additional input device.
My toolbox has expanded with apps that allow me to create kaleidoscopes, fractals and Droste images. The results of these experiments are my recent abstracts.
As a former traditional printmaker, I see computer-generated art and digital printing as an update to analog printmaking techniques.
I believe a piece should work on both intellectual and aesthetic levels. A viewer should be able to appreciate it for its artistic merits as well as the subject matter, symbolism, and genre. Art is a conversation that should transcend a spoken or written language.
I made Rockford my home after receiving my BFA in Art from Rockford College (now Rockford University) in 1977 with a Printmaking major and a textile art minor. In 2011 I returned to fine art after retiring from commercial art. My work has been accepted for exhibition at the Rockford Art Museum, The Wright Museum at Beloit College, Rockford College and the Freeport Museum.