Since childhood, I have shared in the universal, human fascination with fire. The campfires, fireworks, roman candles and countless explosions of my youth, were expressions of that desire to be close to fire, to create it and be inside it’s flame. This desire has driven me and many others to both invention and destruction. We celebrate fire in our arts and in our lives using its volatility and meditative spirit to connect ourselves to a continuum of the human ‘hereness’ but also with deep connections to spirit and ritual.
In our contemporary times the ritual play of fire has migrated into our technological world, in its material, in our devices as well as online. The digital images of wild fires shared on youtube and social media platforms has encouraged people to communicate their passion for this essential element both in celebration and in folly. I celebrate this folly of chance.
In these paintings, I mine the web for CCT surveillance videos, finding chance moments when our devices react against us, small battery fires that erupt without warning, exploding in pockets and purses, in subways and stores. I search for images of self-inflicted firework calamities documented by friends or passerby. These split-second events that change the course of one’s day, which are willingly being documented and distributed for our society’s consumption speak of darker issues behind self surveillance, trust and traditions.