I am a New Orleans native and have been surrounded by different art forms my entire life. Through the cultural influence of the city, I have used visual arts to explore the themes of mental health and experiences of minorities in modern day America. While attending Xavier University of Louisiana, I studied closely under artists Ayo Scott and Ron Bechet, implementing the use of audacious color palettes and automatic drawings into my work. Basing my work primarily in abstraction, my compositions aim to incorporate elements of nature, the human form, emotions, and their relationships. By combining intuitive creation and strategic arrangement, the compositions are able to display the beauty of chaotic forms and their interactions. This general theme formed naturally throughout my early stages of painting and has transferred to different mediums.
My work's based primarily in acrylic paint, watercolor, and Chinese ink, are constructed in layers. Each wash is allowed to interact freely with its material and is adjusted through a meditative process of improvisation. This careful arrangement of various layers invites the viewer to dive deeply into each piece and reflect on the suggested themes.
Questions & Answers
Describe your art in three words.
Meditative, Personal, Experimental
Describe yourself in one word.
What do you love the most about creating art in New Orleans? What particular part of your immediate environment, in your neighborhood specifically influences your work?
My favorite part of creating in New Orleans is being surrounded by a deeply rooted culture. Through conversations and interactions with different people, I can find new perspectives to create from. Nature always aids in my creative process so any nature trail or park in the city influences my work.
Describe your creative process. Are there any rituals or rites of passage you exercise before you begin a new piece?
My creative process begins with a meditative period to reflect on my thoughts and feelings surrounding a given theme. Due to my work being centered around evoking emotions, this period is crucial to my process. I reflect on these topics in a multitude of ways such as journaling, holding discussions with peers, and meditating. After this period of reflection, I begin to create automatic drawings. This is where I allow these feelings to work themselves out on paper. From these automatic pieces, I create my compositions through a cut and collage process. Here, I chose parts of these original pieces that either complement or juxtapose each other to create a conversation between different layers. These layers are used to invite the audience in to reflect and converse with others about the suggested theme.
Where do you draw inspiration?
I draw inspiration from nature, my own healing journey, and different conversations with peers.
Who are your artistic influences or gurus?
Ron Bechet, Ayo Scott, BMike, Sam Gilliam, and Helen Frankenthaler
In New Orleans, art and music go hand in hand. What type of music, band or song lyric best describes your work?
Radiohead- In Rainbows
Where can we find you when you are not creating art?
When I’m not creating I’m usually in nature.
What is your favorite time of day/day of the week/month of the year?
My favorite time of the year is spring time. Great weather, great food, and great festivals.
What is something people don’t know about you? A fun fact.
Before beginning my career in painting, I was a multidisciplinary dancer for 11 years.