Born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island, I am an artist/art educator/designer living and working in Chicago, Illinois. I attended Massachusetts College of Art/BFA, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago/MFA and the University of Illinois Chicago/BFA.
What draws me in and gives me pause in the natural world is the raw, rough, and sublime. Out of that experience comes the creation of works that are simultaneously provocative, gorgeous, and at times, terrifying.
My art draws influence from the history of abstraction, my Armenian-American identity, nature, Art Brut, memories, and more. Employing an additive/subtractive process with materials like paint, beeswax, soil, and threads, I've exhibited my creations in galleries and museums, while some reside in private collections.
Art history, painting, printmaking, design, typography, and color theory form the foundation for the conceptual and compositional aspects of my work. Recurring symbols, both recognizable and cryptic, manifest in my pieces, bringing to life provocative worlds waiting to be explored. The figure nature, mosaic tiles, textures, patterns, free forms, organic lines, symbols of hope, Art Brut, and dreams inspire me conceptually.
My approach to abstract paintings is an intuitive and physical process. Utilizing palette knives and unconventional tools, I create a 3-dimensional quality, purposefully juxtaposing thick and thin applications of paint. The scale influences my process, ranging from entirely intuitive to partially planned.
My work incorporates various materials such as oil paint, acrylic, inks, markers, gold leaf, ash, dirt, threads, dry pigment, encaustics, enamels, spray paint, wood, panels, wax paper, stencils, and found substrates. I shape masonite and wood with a bandsaw, creating abstract forms that are painted, varnished, or left in a natural state. Conceptually, the pieces explore the intersection of organic and human-made worlds.
At times under my pen name Sweet Angst, my work explores stencils and printmaking as a layering medium, incorporating overlapping images and words. Using silkscreen on archival paper, found substrates, and custom-designed wood/masonite panels, I blend traditional and experimental techniques to create custom shapes that add spontaneity and texture to the designs.