My paintings depict constructed narratives that deal with memory and identity as influenced by the passage of time. Even though this subject is primarily derived from personal experiences, the places and characters in my work are deliberately unspecific, thereby allowing the viewer to access and interpret them on their own terms. I’m not interested in presenting a resolved story, or conveying a certain message. Instead, my intent is to create a small self-contained universe, permeated by a certain mood, and inhabited by characters who are either static or engaged in actions whose purpose is ultimately unclear – thus leaving these moments of tension or uncertainty open to interpretation.
I have lived in five different countries so far, and this experience has inevitably led to a kind of confusion about my personal identity. Moving from place to place, one has the sense of being at home everywhere and nowhere at the same time, assuming different personas as a way of conforming to the current context, but never quite fully fitting in. At the same time, past experiences gradually become distorted when seen through the prism of subsequent events, since relating to their past on either rational or an emotional level, one inevitably ends up projecting onto it their current thoughts, beliefs, or dreams. As a result, a past event is never a fixed constant, but can fluctuate depending on the circumstances, so that the resulting quasi-mythological construction often has very little in common with what actually took place.
I’m not trying to illustrate these experiences directly, but in my mind, the processes that occur in my work have certain parallels to these distortions. The stories in my paintings are shaped by the internal logic of each individual piece – I normally start working on a painting without a preconceived notion of what the final result would look like, allowing free association, narrative context and formal concerns dictate the direction in which a particular piece evolves. This element of the unknown is something that keeps painting as a medium endlessly captivating for me, since it harbours within itself an inexhaustible potential to surprise, and provides the opportunity to access and explore themes that would have otherwise remained elusive.