I use airbrush drawings in my painting practice in contrast to the highly manual touch and tangible weight of oil paint. Drawing with airbrush affords me the gestures of provisional painting and rapid mark-making. Commandeering and pivoting the stereotypical male-dominated legacy and commercial techniques of the airbrush medium is also of interest to me as a feminist gesture.
The starting point for this work is Ikebana and a 1970’s coffee table book. Ikebana is a highly codified system that seeks to stand in for nature without apologizing for it’s artifice. Furthermore, flowers in art are rarely just flowers. Still-life painting typically contains hidden symbolism and Dutch Master florals often showed blooms that could never have actually existed together. Also, the coded language of flowers has a long tradition in art history with the appearance of various plants and blooms conveying specific meaning and emotion.
My air spun arrangements in unnatural hues do not exist in the real world. They are hothouse flowers inflicted with seasonal affective disorder, forced to bloom at the wrong time and in the wrong place. In doing so they serve as a deceptively festive allegory to melancholia and dissonance of any kind.