I strive to create work that means something to me and to my community. I’m interested in paying attention to the work being done in my community and highlighting the folks doing this work through visual art and murals. By creating larger-than-life artworks of artists and activists in the LGBTQ community, I am giving them the spotlight, I am lifting them up so that they may be recognized and seen by the larger world so that others will understand the impact these artists are making on all our lives. I need the essence of their work to be amplified so that it reaches masses of people. The work they are doing matters and it is changing our world piece by piece.
Each time I create a piece of work, my aim is to find a way to create a design that directs the viewer to not only think of something specific, but also to feel something emotional. My artwork, whether it be murals, glassworks, or studio work, blends together my design sensibilities and the influence of queer culture, figuratively and abstractly highlighting the impact my community is making. It is within my designs that I am directly influenced by and rooted in my original connection (and disconnection) to stained glass in church spaces. I’ve spent time pushing my style, transforming my design and art-making process into symbols that now hold space in both the queer community as well as the public sphere. As collaboration and community-building are important aspects of my practice, I often work with other artists on these murals and studio works. I am inspired and driven by the emotional impact other artists have on me and channel that directly into my Queer Mural Series, which highlights the work of artists and activists in the Chicago LGBTQ community through portraiture. The collaborative aspect of my work aims to decenter myself in art making and join forces, merge ideas, and blend skills to enhance the mission of the piece we are working on and in turn give this energy to the larger community. My goal is to make work that lifts up and pays close attention to the living art heroes in our queer community in Chicago.