Excavating Color: An Artist Statement
 Excavation, purportedly, was the best painting Willem DeKooning had painted in 1950.It incorporated anthropomorphic shapes all over the canvas. It was a breakthrough painting. I have personally studied it many times at the Art Institute of Chicago permanent collection. One can see the layering and scraping effect he had created in this and other work. As one critic had said:
Aptly titled, the painting reflects de Kooning’s technically masterful painting process: an intensive building up of the surface and scraping down of its paint layers, often for months, until the desired effect was achieved.
 In 1981 I met DeKooning and toured his studio in Long Island. The impact of this visit has stayed with me for over 40 years as a working painter. To excavate, one must perform an action which is to cover then to dig into, thus unearthing a substance which for me is paint. I also relate to sculptor Richard Serra’s remarkable 1967-1968 “Verb list Compilation: Actions to Relate to Oneself", especially to curve to lift, to inlay, to impress, to smear, to rotate, to swirl, to spread, to collect, of tension, of nature, of layering”. The process of free form painting involves another type of layering and removing thus revealing, sometimes, jewel like color. The discoid is a deliberate compositional format chosen by me to unify my paintings. Effusion refers to unrestrained expression of words or feelings which may be apropos for abstract painting. Intuitive thinking is important in this process. This is a feeling /sense not requiring the use of rational processes such as facts and data. Effective intuition comes from years of knowledge and experience. It is a truly human process requiring deep feeling. My color is applied with heavy impasto acrylic layers built up on Masonite and/or wood grounds, achieving a unified textural surface as my painting goal. Nature has also played a part in my art having observed the Pacific Ocean’s constancy of waves off the coast of Saipan having lived and taught on this remote island in 2020.Audibly, I hear the Kansas wind and see the results of it as nature bends foliage back and forth. I have chosen these circular formats as they contribute to my quest for an all-over abstract surface. Thus, my recent paintings exemplify a process of wrapping or layering impasto acrylic paint on a circular format I refer to as a discoid. Instead of a brush, I use a large palette knife for these circular paintings. The palette knife is a tool which allows me to apply and press acrylic paint into the ground, using thick impasto overlapping swathes of color. There is also an excavation  removal of this paint and a transplant of another color. When you paint in a circle or discoid format, all sectors of the painting are crucial to the composition. Someone once said the there is no corner to hide in when you work in a circular format. Color acrylic impasto layers create immediate effects of abstract color stasis and kinesis. You cannot plan this interaction, as it happens because of the process of direct color application fostered by the impasto application of paint. Colors and marks disappear and reemerge as per paint application. I do not need a palette, as my painting ground is the palette where the expression is born. Each painting is a spiritual adventure in direct expression of color application layers composed multi-directionally as forms emerge as seen in celestial and terrestrial nature.

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