I love paper. It almost doesn’t matter what kind. My mom has even made up a word for me – she says I am a “paperian.” I have indiscriminately collected writing paper, notebooks and blank journals that I just couldn’t stand to leave behind. But I especially love vintage paper – stamps, receipts, letters, postcards, tickets, maps, sheet music, playbills… It is absolutely fascinating to me. I love the color of old paper and the way the paper feels and the way the ink has faded in places. It ranks right up there with rust in its beauty. But I really love that there is a story behind these items. Each piece makes me wonder about who it belonged to and why it was saved and how it has survived in the world for so long and how far it has traveled to reach me. And when I can actually stand to part with a certain piece of this ephemera, I incorporate it into my art and send it back out into the world so it can continue its wondrous journey…
Vintage sheet music for trombone found at Brocante Market! I love using sheet music in my art but this brought back memories… I played the trombone in middle school. I remember lugging that thing around wondering why I had chosen it as my instrument. If I had known then how cool playing the trombone could really be (see Trombone Shorty), I may have continued to play…
Replenished my display at Sarasota Architectural Salvage today and I am in good company with my partner Michelle (Altered by Michelle), Kelley B Designs and Kelley Love Designs. Come by and check out the cool art by cool local artists going on at this great shop! 1093 Central Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34236
“The depth of a soul is not measured by what appears on the surface.”
This piece was inspired by a conversation I had with a good friend. She had been working on an internet TV show and had overheard one of the producers say that he wasn’t sure about the content but that she looked good on camera… It made me think about how distorted the definition of beauty has become. We are all so much more than what we look like – so this is my poke at society and the media for its often harsh focus on looks and outward appearances.
The mirror is vintage Ethan Allen and was given to me by another friend (I have great friends!). I decided to use it for this piece hoping the viewer would see something more in themselves than their physical appearance. The border has been hand papered with images of old measuring sticks and definitions enlarged from a 1930s dictionary. I chose definitions that I think capture the true beauty of a person: intelligence, humor, grace, strength, humility… The flowers in each corner are carved wood that I painted and antiqued.
I hope there will come a time when there is less focus on looks and more focus on the substance within… And I also hope that when each of us looks in a mirror we are able to see our own inner beauty, in spite of what society and the media try to tell us.
I loved this painting before I ever saw it in person. My partner, Michelle, came home one afternoon last October and said, “Wait til you see Mark’s new painting!” She had seen it at Sarasota Architectural Salvage and had taken a photo of it for me. I was blown away… Every single day after I saw that photo I visualized this painting in my house, on my wall. Last December my vision was realized – the painting now resides exactly where I thought it would be. I look at it daily – it holds power and depth and magic and inspiration for me. And it makes me feel grateful that my friend Mark followed his own artistic vision and created this amazing painting so it could hang in my living room and I could stare at it every day.