When I was an undergraduate at Indiana University, a painting professor Barry Gealt, was exceptional at teaching compositional structure. He would bring in books of artists that he clearly loved, including Johannes Vermeer, Milton Avery, and Giorgio Morandi. At first glance, Morandi’s paintings and drawings seemed to have nothing to them. Simple lines gesturing place and space in a way I had never seen before. I got the composition passion in those classes with Barry looking at his books and I have loved Morandi’s artwork ever since.

He spent his whole life painting the same bottles and jars in a dusty studio in Italy. His attention to space, abstracted in seemingly simple compositions, have been the inspiration for my paintings. I sometimes feel like am one of Morandi's children.

Still Life 1960

Morandi, Still Life, 1960.

Early Artistic Influences

Reflecting upon my early artistic influences, Charley Harper came to mind. In the late 60’s, his artwork was celebrated and often published in Cincinnati’s local papers. I remember cutting out pictures of his work and collaging them into my first, child sketchbook, as a way to learn to read words, such as bird, praying mantis,…
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