I've been in a weird mood for most the day - a little cantankerous, edgy, irritated, and a little anxious. Reason being I've procrastinated on writing a new, shortened artist statement for the RAM (Rockford Art Museum) Midwestern Biennial, and now its due. So, finally, after putzing around all day and avoiding this task, and getting more and more irritable, I finally hunkered down in my office and wrote it. After about four drafts, I'm in a much better mood. A lot calmer, and the blood pressure is down. Here goes, for whomever it is besides Ellen that reads my shit:
"If I wrote a manifesto, it would be one sentence. The sentence would be “CONCEPT IS NOT ENOUGH”.
My primary intent, my ambition, is for you to feel something when you look at my work. I don’t consider myself an orthodox surrealist, but I do use the tools of the trade - incongruent combinations, unexpected associations, and the suggestion of symbols or scenes – in an attempt to convey an emotion, to evoke a mood or an atmosphere.
Any ideas conveyed along with that emotional experience are fine. Ideas alone, without a shared connection, are barren and empty things, a mere transfer of information. I feel emotion is underrated in our society, and in contemporary art. When someone asks me what a work of mine means, my response is what does a melody mean?
I primarily make figurative work, because this is an obvious and effective means of conveying emotions – through gesture, posture, body language. I work in bronze, wood, cast glass, welded and fabricated iron."