Today, we are bombarded with massive amounts of man-made and manipulated media. Like many of us, I used to thrive with man-made control and aim for "perfection". It was an increasingly harrowing, materialistic, disappointing, and confining existence; dominated by the shouts of loud and maddening ego.
As a contemporary artist, I challenge myself to use my art to express my longing for authenticity in the modern day. I want to move beyond man-made perfection and use my art to evoke a shared human experience of being moved again by tangible yet humbling truth and realness. I am reminded of 15th-century Japanese Wabi-Sabi, Zen principles. Translated beautifully by Thomas Oppong in his genuinely inspiring philosophical article, Wabi-Sabi: The Japanese Philosophy For a Perfectly Imperfect Life, the 7 Wabi-Sabi aesthetic principles are:
Kanso — simplicity
Fukinsei — asymmetry or irregularity
Shibumi — beauty in the understated
Shizen — naturalness without pretense
Yugen — subtle grace
Datsuzoku — freeness
Seijaku — tranquility
I want to reach an audience like me, who feels that authenticity still matters.
I want my art to express a desire to overcome the over-polished numbness of “fantasy realism”, providing an alternative to the ego-driven "alternative realness" found in our modern life.
Through my art, l want to connect with people who seek meaning beyond materialism's promised perfection and who are drawn to the perfectly imperfect.
Through my art, l want to offer a glimpse into the often-fleeting experience of the timelessness of time, where art happens.
Not aiming to be provocative, my contemporary art statement is not forced “newness”, but rooted in Zen.
Not looking for attention or to be popular, I seek to be appreciated quietly by kindred spirits that long for something deeper and more meaningful that transcends time.
With my art, I hope to leave behind fine art that evokes a deeper and timeless joy, awe or peace… the Zen that is achievable when man and nature are in harmony.
I call my approach to abstract painting Neo Wabi-Sabi. Neo Wabi-Sabi’s current manifesto is: Honoring the practice of man co-creating art with nature. While nature creates most of the authentic awe, man’s critical touch makes or breaks the piece, revealing the myriad gradations of balance between the ego and the egoless.