The genesis for this work was an elephant dreaming of a burning plane. This was a painting I had done for a show last year in which a love lorn elephant dreams of his beloved who so burns with desire that she sets the plane alight. It was a good dream. After finishing that painting I created a small series of drawings of burning planes that I showed along with the elephants, imagining them both as phoenix images and small lover's votives left by the elephant, tokens of renewal and rebirth. But people's reactions surprised me, everyone who looked at the drawings had a kneejerk response and told me that it reminded them of 9-11. I was fascinated that, after all this time, this experience has created this gravity well in people where anything that bears a remote similarity in association with this event gets sucked in its gravity of remembered pain and grief, sucked down into blackness never to be brought out into the light. So I carried this idea of flight with me, and the idea that transformation is often difficult because the vessel that carries its potential is so often filled with these gravity wells and private holes. This brought me to the story of Icarus, which is essentially tragic. I thought I could try to find a way to flip that on its head and make it an expression of modern spiritual yearning, spiritual in spite of the age we live in, or maybe because of, since this series focuses on the figure in terms of anxiety, its rawness, its strange brutality, and stubborn persistence in western culture's different obsessions with the body. In casting my figures in the feminine, I had thought maybe that the story of Icarus is not one about father and son. No son is interested in the inventions of his father. Son's are rebellious by nature and repelled by their similarities to their fathers. I wanted to imagine Icarus as a daughter,or at least expressed in the feminine. I was also found it amusing that a natural extension of this idea is the story of bluebeard and his brides, a story about the seduction of the unknown, curiosity and the forbidden. In my thinking, Icarus was seduced by her fathers wings because they were beautiful, and combined with her, created more beauty. This was my starting point and how the work unfolded. In addition to those spiritual questions, I was dogged by this question: Why does desire express itself so strangely, both in what we want and how we set out to get it? I tried to imagine some of that strangeness in a series of invented forms, creating a figurative vocabulary of rising, falling, plummeting, seeking, ripening, decaying, becoming. All of the paintings are on white grounds, which I find to be a summation of flatness and the masculine, which in turn acts as a counterpoint to the feminine forms in each of the paintings. There is also a connotation of things seeking oblivion, like in music.