I have always enjoyed “Dick and Jane” images as source material for my paintings. The children depicted in those illustrations are icons of an idealized America that simply didn’t exist for many people. On one level those books were “readers” that helped young people discover the english language through stories, yet they also represented an attempt by educators to impart a sense of civic responsibility and morality via the simple concept of ‘neighborliness.’
The paintings in this series explore the disorientation and contradictions that I associate with being a product of a culture that brought us both the Cold War and the Internet Age within the span of only half a lifetime. The hapless Dick and Jane characters in my paintings inhabit disastrous scenes that are complicated by the intrusion of giant starbursts, stripes, bubbles, and other graphic elements. The central drama in these paintings concerns naivete and hubris. I consider them to be proxies for my own experiences.