Based in Brooklyn, NY
I have recently been working with sand, it is giving my images body and it is reassuring somehow, maybe intuitively sensing traces of the laborer in my DNA, raking on the canvas, making the air around the object as thick as a physical material. It feels as if distances are filled between objects, or even between their own layers. It is one sensation I have always felt only while stoned, so I can do it in painting, bridge the distance, and feel the world closer to me.
I’ve been drawing and painting since I was born, learning from my grandparents, who were both painters. From my birthplace in Madagascar, I went on to pursue classical training in Paris, and then self-taught oil painting after I arrived in the United States. I was a photorealist for years, intrigued by layers in the form of the painting of skin in large nudes and figuring out the order of layers – which slice of paint was placed first. But contours made volumes feel too tightly closed, encased, and heavy.
Contours, circulating light on and around volumes, or sand peaks can make layers on their own, not just on the surface of the subject, but also deeper into its structure, that contribute to the bigger picture while the objects retain a distinct presence.