My practice is an ongoing investigation of visual narrative creation that I call the “Foldy Series”. My background is in painting, I have a MFA in Painting (1997) from the University of Alberta, and as a result notions of quality, craft and taste continue to plague me. I am interested in visual narratives: film, video, comic books, serial image making, multimedia installation and book works. In the spring of 2008 I began making Foldy Books of Death (FBoD). The FBoD are handmade, 10 to 46 page accordion fold books that, unfolded, create a single image up to 16 feet long. I quickly realized that the accordion fold book was the perfect vehicle for my creative/narrative/image-making/material-based artistic impulses and allowed me to fully realize an extended visual narrative, outside of installation, that rebutted the modernist conversation of my schooling (e.g. figuration vs. abstraction or art vs. kitsch...) and addressed the contemporary concerns of my practice (e.g. the social role of the artist and the creation of new possibilities...).
All of my work since the discovery of the FBoD has been focused on the continuation and extension of “Foldy Booking”. It is a cumulative process. I gather imagery from everywhere: cute pet sites, nursery rhymes, fairy tales, dreams, family photographs, news stories, history and my imagination. I strive to create “the field of constructions that express a range of thinking” rather than a definitive, authoritative work (what Clement Greenberg liked to call “The One”). Within the frame of the FBoD I examine the hierarchies, mechanics and politics of image making. Iteration builds on iteration, combining new motifs and themes with old favorites creating new narratives as the series grows.
The “Foldy Sensibility” has permeated into every aspect of my practice and brought a freshness and excitement to my image making. Reinvigorated, drawing is back at the forefront of my practice and my passion for painting and printmaking is rekindled. For me, image and content have always been paramount. I do, however, maintain sensitivity to formal concerns, a love for material qualities and a desire to create objects of significance. My hope is to someday make a work of heartbreaking beauty. In the meantime I bring together various image making strategies to create free form journalistic narratives that examine failure, loss and apocalyptic destruction from the perspective of a “white guy” living in unceded Coast Salish territory.
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