I was introduced to meditation with the phase, “You are a mountain, indifferent to clouds.” From moment to moment, this advice works as intended. But when you continue to push the logic of a metaphor, it collapses under the force of its own logic. To deny the effect of clouds is to deny the inescapable violence in the life of a mountain. The mountain is born out of violence, and outside forces erode its body for the rest of its life.
Since I am unable to be indifferent to clouds, this erosion of metaphor seems more important to contemplate. Drawing is my devotional to sick metaphors. An exacerbation and a comfort, drawing allows me to play out, in flawed isolation, how metaphors for labor, borders, hierarchies, and ecosystems can falter. My hand makes the same mark repeatedly, the muscle memory freeing my mind to wander with those dynamic, destructive clouds that were once so troubling. I research in isolation, breaking down and revealing perpetual possibilities of where to look next.
My drawings have rules that determine how different forms grow and interact. Forms develop their personalities through interaction, and sometimes defy their constraints. A completed drawing is a snapshot of this interaction. Each is a paused moment—an indifferent mountain—that is necessary to observe their rules, but inherently ignorant of scope beyond its borders and the unseen forces at play.
My current work introduces a special kind of imbalance: What happens in the observable space of a drawing when its natural predators are gone? A form that once dictated the behavior and force of all following elements is extinguished. An area that was once distant, unobservable, negative space is back lit, allowing the full bodies of what was once glimpsed to be visible.