January, 2019

My current painting constructions continue to address socio-political issues and feminist critique. Some of my concerns are the dangers facing women, the immigrants and children, animals and our fragile environment. Celestial skies are often a backdrop for the ensuing narratives. I layer the imagery using acrylics, oils and mixed media on linen panels and plexiglass. This is a world upside down, but it is rendered with a sense of humor and optimism.

A separate ongoing series, The Wall of Shame, consists of 35 portraits of President Trump and his cohorts. I had been painting and drawing images of women with restraining masks on them to keep them silent. I took these bondage devices and rendered them on the Trump heads. There are layers of images painted and transfered onto 13" plexiglass squares. In process is a sculpture of Putin flying over the rogues gallery. He is the master puppeteer, manipulating hanging acetate sheets of the various painted bondage masks.

A recent series Censored (2012-2015) was based on art books from Iran where any nudity by artists like Picasso, Matisse and Duchamp has been covered with black lines or pixilated so that the painting or sculpture has been obscured. Other paintings in the series comment on IKEA's catalogues in Saudi Arabia and Russia where the women have simply been removed. Doppelhouse Press published a book on this work, The Artist, The Censor and The Nude, A Tale of Morality and Appropriation in August 2017. Francis M. Naumann has written the Foreword and art historian Glenn Harcourt has written an essay on my work with an accompanying section discussing Contemporary Iranian artists. There was a panel discussion at Anderson Ranch in Snowmass, CO in August 2017 with Joseph, Harcourt and Naumann and moderated by Eleanor Heartney.

My interactive installation, The Sideshow of the Absurd has traveled to over ten museums and venues around the country. The exhibit references the world of circuses and carnivals to challenge our notions of difference and tolerance. A short film on the Sideshow of the Absurd premiered at the Aspen Film Festival in 2015 and was shown at film festivals worldwide. The film was awarded Best Short at the Williamsburg Indie Film Festival, The Gold Award at the Atlanta Shortsfest and Best Animated Short at the Santa Fe Film Festival.