Having recently returned from a two-months-long art residency in Kyoto, Japan, Make_Shift features a series of paintings made during that experience, in addition to a body of preliminary work. Taken as a whole, the paintings trace an arc from an unextraordinary life in update New York to an even less extraordinary and short-lived life abroad; it is because of this simplicity that the artist can begin to see and question latent assumptions about his own native culture.
The work explores the dynamic relationship that exists between people and their built environment. Things like buildings and infrastructure offer a lens through which we can view ourselves and perhaps start to see how the way we build affects us. In Japan, cultural history and land scarcity seem to foster a ubiquitous melding of the natural and unnatural, a balance which stands in contrast to the artist’s familiar American landscapes of overwhelming abundance and relentlessly inefficient development. Taken together they point to a simple question: are we the makers or the products?