artist statement

It's obvious that as a society we are trying to understand love, a phenomenon deemed central to the meaning of "human." Some people write about love; some philosophize about it; some study it scientifically. I do all of those things but primarily I collect, interpret, and create images. First I sought to represent the connectivity of minds through the intertwining, merging, or melding of bodies. Like this:

Just try to untangle them in your mind. Somehow the power and solidness of their formation seems to transcend the physical. How could they not be mentally interwoven in such a position?
The following was my first sketch attempting such a representation:

By creating images, I wanted to create an ideal kind of love. 

I wanted my love to be a merging of two entities into one - the two bodies indistinguishable from one another -but that made the image confusing to look at, so I shaded one darker than the other. I wanted my love to be genderless and universalbut the darker figure turned out to be more feminine and the lighter figure masculine. Plus, the shading created the unintentional element of race. 

Love seemed doomed to be two very separate people rather than one joined entity. I liked the connectivity that the following sketch conveyed, even though it didn't solve my artistic or philosophical problems.

I had an epiphany when I realized that my lovers didn't have to be touching. They are two separate entities drawn together by something else.

I later satirized my own representation of love. I thought love might be a farce. What is this mysterious force that draws us together but the language (words or otherwise) that comes out of one person and consequently makes the other feel something.

As entirely separate entities with faulty mechanisms of communication, aren't we doomed to misunderstanding?

The Lovers by Rene Magritte, 1928

As beautiful and simple as real love might be, the complexities of interaction still make relationships difficult if not impossible to maintain. Without a proper use for love, why bother having it?

Especially with the pain of separation that must ultimately occur.

Giving up on representing love for awhile, I tried drawing related human interactions. Desire for inclusion, for example:

We cannot help the fact that we need each other to survive and even more, to propagate. We create social structures to bind us.


With the need for human connection, we have to decide which hand we would most like to hold, but the problem of selection remains.  


Even when love seems arbitrary, most of us come back to that basic human desire to love and be loved. We try and try.

And as with most human endeavors, perhaps occasionally we succeed...