My artwork has always been about landscapes.
From overdeveloped cityscapes to the bright colors of the Favelas of Brazil. From the tranquil dunes of Provincetown to the tempestuous seas that surround it. The land (or sea!) has been my focus. Looking back at all of my work, I now see how an early painting of mine, Utter Destruction, was a sign of the future.
The new work is a culmination of all of the themes since 2004.
In my new series, Aftermath, I examine landscapes not just for their beauty but for their vulnerability. I see the landscape as threatened by acts of nature -- storms, drought, fire, floods -- acts of nature likely enhanced in their destructiveness by climate change. The destruction of the Caribbean islands. The incineration of vineyards and lives in Sonoma. Human actions are driving Earth to a hotter and scarier state.
My first two works, A Bitter Harvest and A Lack of a Lake, capture a landscape left barren by the drying up of the Lake Chad basin. By the end of the nineties, the lake, once the size of New Jersey, has shrunk by ninety-five percent forcing 2.5 million people to be displaced. Then Boko Haram entered the area, forcing 1 million more to migrate.
Ike and Rico focus on landscapes obliterated by hurricanes. Ike reflects the Bolivar Peninsula community of Gilchrist, Texas which was leveled by Hurricane Ike in 2008. One lone home was left standing in a storm that caused $30 billion in damage. Rico portrays the horrors of Hurricane Maria. Rico ripped open another massive wound in the history of America, throwing Puerto Rico, along with so much of the Caribbean, into a state of crisis.
Nature can be beautiful. And it can be terrifying.