Ramblings on the Gypsy Soul


Some of you have desired to know more about the impact my travels have had on my work, and I will endeavor to articulate as best I can. Much is self evident - the obvious changing landscape in my paintings - the olive groves and cypress trees of the Mediterranean, hill top hamlets of southern Italy. Then the changing materials found locally - old kilims from central Turkey, scavenged cardboard and street detritus in southern Spain. I am mostly a visual sponge and scan the world around me with greedy eyes.

There are practical aspects of working on a long journey such as this. Water based paints and smaller pieced together papers have replaced the the large heavy panels and wax and oil paints I have used in my home studio. And significantly, after downsizing my gallery presence, I feel free to explore my own process independent of commercial commitments. This is key.

To set out on an extended journey in this way, one is never really the same again. In what ways this is true for me, I cannot fully know while I am still in it, but it has confirmed for me the nature of my gypsy soul. The world is my home and freedom my religion. A favorite quote from Jack London reads, "It is easier for me to go down to the sea than to stay on dry land". This holds true for me both literally and metaphorically, for to live in this way does not feel courageous, only the natural course of this life. I think little of my "things", and while I miss deeply my loved ones, I also embrace readily the new people in my life. Even my ineptitude with foreign languages proves to be no obstacle.

The name of my first residency was called "Obras" in Portuguese, which means "work in progress". This aptly describes the ongoing digestion and expression of this journey - and being more visual than verbal, I will continue to let the work be the evidence of whatever impact my perambulations have had on this one life being lived.

Moorish arches on Cardboard.

Moorish arches on Cardboard.