Maps have always held my interest: a metaphor for direction and a logical path. They also tie into my near obsessive love of paper. In crafting this project, I’m shocked at the number of memories it stirred and how many books came off the shelf, looking for reference. This has been one of my most thoroughly researched projects, finding the journeys that called to me and exploring new details. It’s been an adventure in and of itself.
It is our journeys than mold us; be it your garden variety trip to the grocery store, a sauntering cradle to grave existence or that insane and glorious gallop along a dirt track in Spain. Many, many thanks to the people who dug around in their closets and found stashes of old maps: some ripped and weather, some marked with journeys long faded in memory, some that stirred ideas for ventures yet to come. These are backbone of this project and a life time of inspiration.
This series is intended for exhibition or inspiration of individual commissions but not individual sale.
42 x 42 Mixed Media
King of the Road Opening Exhibition, Studio WFC, Santa Fe,NM, May 2019
Southside Public Library, Santa Fe, NM, January 2020
I love Mexico, and I don’t hug to its Americanized tourist meccas. I get out there, speak my bad Spanglish, flirt my way out of disaster, buy fish from the locals at market rate because I can and I know it will feed their shoeless family for a week.
Our southern border with Mexico is dotted with lush pastures, death ridden deserts, many exotic and endanger species, two rivers, 48 points of recorded entry and gut wrenching heartbreak. My blue eyes and legal passport have allowed me to sail across this border, bound for adventures – diving, crazy camping, fishing, and sailing on the Sea of Cortez. It was here I fell in love with fish tacos, purchased from a road side stand that promised Montezuma’s Revenge but didn’t deliver and only left me longing for more. To me the border signals I am on vacation. But to so many it is the last impenetrable barrier to a better life.
I am 3rd generation American on one side of my family, DAR on the other. I have no more “Right” to be here than 97% of this once great nation. It plagues me that so many people are tortured over twisted line of division. For it is here, in 2019, strung out over 1900 miles that you will find your tired, your hungry, and your huddle masses long to be free. Let us find a way to make the American Dream accessible to all that seek her magic.
9 x 42
MapMakers Show Fuller Lodge Art Center, Los Alamos, NM June 2019
I did the Camino on horseback in 2017. There is just something incredible about a pilgrimage trip. Never have I been changed so much by one trip, one spectacular and ancient road. I loved the horses, the people, the food, the quaint inns, the early morning chanted services, the ancient country culture. Everyone has done some; any portion of the Camino has had a life-altering experience. If you have gone, you know. If you haven’t, you should.
30 x 30
King of the Road Opening Exhibition, Studio WFC June 2019
MapMakers Show Fuller Lodge Art Center, Los Alamos NM June 2014
I grew up seeped in Lewis and Clark histories and found everything about the Corps of Discovery wildly exciting, slightly reckless, and showered with a healthy dose of good fortune – a metaphor of my own existence. Meriwether Clark, before his suicide, stated in his prodigious journals that he felt he had never amounted to anything and had failed in his epic journey across a vastly unknown portion of the continent. The truth, 200 plus years later, is that his name and face appears on coins and postage stamps. He named many species of plant and animals discovered on the expedition. His name is on an unprecedented number of geographical locations, town and counties as well as countless schools. Three naval ships bear his family name. It is a true testament to the devastating crush of depression. If he could have only known the reaches his journey and discoveries made. I hope the veils of heaven allow him to view the legacy he has contributed to contemporary society.
12 x 12
The Shackleton Expedition has always held much interest for me. Who embarks on such a journey? Twice? And yet it is considered one of the greatest leadership accomplishments, a testament to survival spanning 497 days. The vortex of the piece is where they became trapped in the ice. As I worked the piece, I couldn’t imagine two more polar expeditions than the Endurance and the Starship Enterprise. But, outside of the fiction of one, they are very similar.
9 x 30
I love road trips. Driving the California coast is one of the best; gorgeous scenery, quaint towns and inns, fabulous seafood, boutique wineries, tide pools, giant redwood forests, majestic oaks on golden hillsides, and impressive sunsets – Just a narrow ribbon of heaven.
How can you create a body of work and not include the classic Route 66? It was actually the start of this project as I wanted to do a series of pieces about Route 66, and then found it limiting, or more accurately found other roads that I wanted to explore in the abstract. So once again it became “the Mother Road.” I’ve stood under the sign near the Art Institute in Chicago where it begins, and traveled bits and pieces through Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. Someday, and probably soon, I will travel it in its entirety.
30 x 30
There were a stack of old maps at my aunts house and I took a few, most interested in those that had been marked on and notes made. This map chronicled a trip they had made to Europe in the late ’60s. It was with this map that I started the series King of the Road, exploring the viability of using map as another paper element. It is one of the few of the series that I don’t have an emotional attachment to, outside of the familial connection.