One of the most beautiful streets we have is Esplanade. The homes there are widely photographed and seen on postcards. One block parallel is the infamous 7th ward. Ya heard me.
Between two worlds: In one, there is freedom of thought, movement, dress. The other is regimented, military, and censored. I dine between both. Since 2004 I’ve been a policeman. I was a beat cop, narc, homicide detective, sniper and commanded a platoon. But WHO I am is an artist – living with one foot on each side; it makes for a cynical view of society.
I need you to get uncomfortable and pissed off at my work. A train wreck. All of it is commentary on people. When you see an oil painting of a murder scene, it SHOULD bother you. We are often moved by anger. It rips us out of complacency and forces us to do something other than simply post memes and bitch about how “inappropriate that painting was”. It is inappropriate that it is HAPPENING. It is real, it is raw, and it is only a few blocks away.
I want you to think about your emotions toward my work. Ultimately, what you get from it is yours alone, but I do have intent. Violence is so common that I have an almost humorous view of it. You knock on enough doors in the middle of the night; see enough toddler’s parents overdose; and hold men’s blood soaked hands, praying with them to a god you do not believe in until the light fades, and it all becomes boring. There is nothing sacred.
An artist’s job is to document his or her time and place. Culture, sex, race, violence, celebration, entitlement. This is New Orleans, and it is now.NEW ORLEANS
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