Substance abuse is baffling. My personal experience and research, along with many powerful stories of those struggling with recovery, led me to begin work on this series. In the grip of addiction, the inability to quit despite necessity or desire has nothing to do with willpower, contrary to popular belief.
Over 100 people die each day in the U.S., and that number increases each year. I want to make viewers aware of this growing problem, presented in the context of symbolic imagery. The pieces reflect experiences of sabotage, stages of sobriety and of surrender.
Recurring symbols are explained, but viewers are encouraged to puzzle out messages in the artwork.
Addiction is cunning, marked by crazy thinking, but I still find levity in recovery. Carnival sideshows and old-fashioned gaming devices are intended to lighten very dark themes. The works are intended to be detailed, complex, and intricately hand-crafted from my perspective.
I am personally inspired by the courage, honesty and humor of the people willing to share their stories, and I am artistically inspired by the challenge of capturing those stories with symbols and words.
It is my intention to provoke questions rather than provide answers on this serious subject that touches us all in some way.