My painting series, “The Presence of Words,” combines imagery and abstractions with text that is generated by chance. In my work, I explore the adaptability, power, and visual form of words through the tradition of painting and discover the various ideas and implications that can arise from the pairing of painting and the written word. 

The introduction of words to my paintings is inspired by the Conceptual and Pop Art movements, during which artists began looking more closely to language and text as mediums capable of introducing “cognitive content” to artwork. I break my habitual way of thinking by choosing words through chance operations, a process that originated with the Dada artists of the early 20th century. Words are central to my paintings both visually and conceptually. I explore the written word as a central subject matter in the context of a traditional approach to painting and embrace the powerful presence - the aura - of a tangible and visually stimulating work of art.

 In several of my paintings, such as Read My Lips, I intend the semantic and visual qualities of words in abstract space to create emotionally charged and contemplative pieces. For Chardin’s Theater, I chose Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin’s The Silver Tureen (1728), which expresses a clearly defined narrative into which I placed words selected from lists generated by chance happenings to alter the painting’s historical meaning and contemporary reception. 

By studying artists such as Ed Ruscha and On Kawara, who use words as art, I investigate the relevance and important consequences of their processes to discover ideas that can come about neither through the written word nor painting alone.