Without idols, without people to look up to, and without guidance, I would not be the artist that i am today. Everybody finds influences of their pleasing, and this is what shapes their mind, shapes their thoughts, and shapes their actions whether that be through creativity or through another aesthetic passion. Stealing is an essential part of any creative journey. As writer and artist Austin Kleon said, "Nothing is original." We are forming our world and our path with every second that passes simply by taking in bits and pieces of our surroundings and storing them in our memory bank. The reproduction of all these fragmented pieces is us. It is transformed into the words that flow from our mouth, the smells that take us back to certain memories, the movement of a brush as it strokes the canvas.
My unique artistic language did not come from thin air. There is one person that made an immense impact on the beginning of my journey. His work, while almost impossible to comprehend, spoke to me. I connected with his raw imagery and imaginary words so deeply that i wanted to recreate the work through my own eyes...or hands. Jean-Michel Basquiat's work gave me the drive and motivation i needed to push past my negativity and fear of not being good enough. I watched interviews and read books about the new era in art that he started. The movement is known today as Neo-Expressionism. Vivid colors, gruesome images and an undertone of only the most real of emotions is how I view this, otherwise indescribable, form of art. I wanted to recreate his work through my own eyes. So, I recreated his work through my own experiences.
My own experiences consisted of anxiety, depression, heartache, and a passionate connection to darkness. My own experiences became laid out in a raw, subconsciously driven timeline of paintings that gave off feeling; Lost, confused, suffering, passion for darkness. My own experiences were a jumbled mess of chaotic beauty that not even I could fully decipher. I didn't care, I found an outlet that allowed me to extinguish all of these overwhelming emotions from my brain. I liked the way my paintings looked, I liked that they resembled Basquiat.
This style of painting that I continued to experiment with became but a milestone in my ever-growing path of my artist journey. As time passed the darkness began to subside, i began to find myself. I became aware that losing someone that you care so much about only hurts until you force yourself to seek out the positive vibration hidden inside all the negative. Each painting revealed a small portion of that light I was so anxiously searching for. Each painting took a step away from Basquiat and a step closer to Zachary Prosser. Influences from my day to day life continued to reflect in my work while I simultaneously began looking for other artists that I could take bits and pieces of. Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock are two out of many expressionists that continue to influence my work to this day. Positive vibes radiate from my work today as I create surreal universes full of celestial energy
I have awakened and taken several steps away from the darkness only to find that true passion is fueled by that dark place. It is inside all of us, learn to embrace it...