Shortly after graduating from high school in 2003, I joined the US Navy. Though I may have put my dreams of attending art school on hold, I have refused to give up my spirit of creativity and curiosity. A career in the military has not halted my development as an artist. In many ways, it has only helped.
In the debate between nature and nurture’s influence on human development, I tend to side with the latter. We create our own realities through our interactions with the people in our lives, the media, the environment, and whatever form of (or lack of) spirituality in which we choose to believe. I am, therefore, a product of my family, my past, my environment, and my own choices. This is the philosophy with which I approach art.
I aim to engage others to see art not just as an object, but as part of the process and the context. Art can serve as a conversation between people and cultures, an exchange of ideas and viewpoints. Photography, my main medium, lends itself to this idea quite well because of its accessibility. The digital camera in the hands of the masses has turned photography into a democratic medium. While some artists may lament the fact, I embrace photography’s ability to give everyone a voice. No one holds the patent on art, and if we are all able to express ourselves, it only increases the number of perspectives with which to enrich our own.
Beyond capturing images, I also seek to live in an artful way. I apply concepts of recycling and reusing which the current state of our world implores us to follow. I use found materials and my own discarded prints to give new life to images. I experiment with other mediums such as writing, painting and design. In my travels, I force myself to meet people and find new perspectives. By seeing other viewpoints, I create and curate a bank of ideas, a wealth of influences, not only for creating art, but for daily living.
When I separate from the US Navy in 2011, after seven years of service, I know I want to attend the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. An education with SAIC will help me develop my ideas through its rich history, its faculty, and its social and ideological makeup. I would be honored, in turn, to contribute to this community. I believe SAIC will promote my growth as an artist, open doors and avenues through which I can share my vision with the world, as the world has shared with me.
“Many people in the world are independent, but very few are free… To be free is to be intelligent, but intelligence does not come into being by just wishing to be free; it comes into being only when you begin to understand your whole environment, the social, religious, parental and traditional influences that are continually closing in on you… but you generally give in to them because inwardly you are frightened. You are afraid of not having a good position in life; you are afraid ow what your priest will say; you are afraid of not following tradition, of not doing the right thing. But freedom is really a state of mind in which there is no fear or compulsion, no urge to be secure.”—Krishnamurti, Think on These Things
This guy’s work is amazing. For a contemporary artist, he is still able to evoke the classical forms and make fans of those who may not “understand modern [contemporary] art.” It’s quite genius the simplicity of his installations as well, and how they evoke the personal out of the infinite.
“If one were to attempt to identify a single problematic aspect of human reasoning that deserves attention above all others, the confirmation bias would have to be among the candidates for consideration. Many have written about this bias, and it appears to be sufficiently strong and pervasive that one is led to wonder whether the bias, by itself, might account for a significant fraction of the disputes, altercations, and misunderstandings that occur among individuals, groups, and nations.”—