'Outside of All Places'

2021 Solo Exhibit, Linda Hodges Gallery, Seattle, WA

Edited by Hilary Oswald


This show is an investigation into living in the present. 

The work began with a sense of nostalgia and longing inspired by vintage signs and architecture 1960's, 1970's and 1980's: the dry clearners, drive-in restaurant, strip malls, and motels--places that feel familiar to me because they are the architecture of my childhood and young years. Even more than familiarity, these places embody the sense of optimism I felt in my youth, driven by the idea that there's a place for everyone,. and the belief--accurate or not--that this was a value we shared as a society.

Such belief is rooted in the idea of belonging, which I found, in those early years of my life, in place rather than social groups or relationships. As I was creating this body of work, I saw these places in our city as spaces that provide that sense of shared identity, even shared humanity, to people.

Over the course of making these works, I realized that the past is every bit as complicated as the present. I am drawn to the past because it's a know entity--I know how it turned out. If I have anxiety in the present, it is because I don't know this part of the story. 

Painting, then, became an exercise in seeing and staying in the present. I can see the everyday places where I go as they are and love them, whether they are beautiful or bleak. I didn't seek out places to paint that are generally understood to be beautiful. I looked at the architecture and landmarks that I encounter in my daily life, and found the beauty in these places by seeing them as they are. My hope is that these works will encourage beauty to find you in any place that is part of your day-to-day life.