My work uses portraiture to explore ideas of embodiment, by which I mean, the relationship between personal identity and appearance. I seek to ask questions about the interaction of embodiment with social experience and ways in which the body can be a site for marginalization.
My paintings are my personal investigations into socially constructed standards of gender presentation, body, gendered beauty and bestowed legitimacy established by a heteronormative society and culture. My continual interest in painting queer subjects, or queer bodies, is sparked and sustained by my own experiences and relationships with others whose identities fall outside these social norms. I view my representations not simply as appropriations of the physical body, but as honest and relatable portraits of people in my beloved community.
As I engage in the painting process, the relationship between myself as artist and my subject becomes pivotal. Through the course of close observation and response, I see myself both constructing and mediating the subject’s body, a kind of inter-embodiment in action through painting.