I make paintings of abandoned buildings. Long before I had heard of urban exploration, I was fascinated by defunct buildings, especially those that were historically or architecturally significant. As a teenager in the 1980s, I would get my mom to drive me to her old elementary school and high school in southeast Atlanta both of which were long-shuttered so that I could walk around the eerily silent grounds and photograph the buildings. Even though I visited these and similar Atlanta sites multiple times, I never got tired of exploring those old buildings.
Many years later, I developed an interest in abandoned sites that had suffered some sort of traumatic history, namely the derelict buildings of Milledgeville, Georgias Central State (psychiatric) Hospital. I was so struck by the hospitals sordid history of overcrowding and neglect not to mention the foreboding sensation I got while visiting those buildings that I created a series of paintings to remind (or educate) viewers about what had happened there. This process of finding a compelling subject, visiting and photographing it extensively, and then making a series of paintings to tell others about it, is the process I still use to make art.
My current series of paintings is about defunct industrial buildings and other sites in Atlanta that have been transformed by graffiti writers. I have long enjoyed looking at the colorful, intricate burners and pieces by skilled writers; and exploring the elderly, silent, decaying buildings that contain the graffiti is as exciting to me now as exploring my moms old high school was 25 years ago. The resulting paintings are for those who share my love of urban exploration, and for those who enjoy the industrial landscape but wouldnt dare set foot inside an abandoned building!