The Century Guild Gallery director, Thomas Negovan, proposed that I create a body of work around the “Alice” theme. At first I was hesitant because I didn’t want to just illustrate the story again since it has been done so many times beautifully in the past and also because many of the characters didn’t seem as relevant today as they did in Lewis Carroll’s time.
Instead I decided to reinterpret to a degree what the original story may have been about. I pretended in my mind that the words and image were town apart and lying on the ground only to be discovered by me later in history and pieced together. I thought about how I would do this filling in the blanks with elements from my own life experiences as well as infusing it with realities of the contemporary world. I also saw some of the characters that Alice meets in the story as being aspects of Alice herself or fragments of her cosmic reality. Where Lewis Carroll sees Wonderland as a surreal landscape infused with bits of England that was his home, I decided to use Detroit (my hometown) as a backdrop. Although I grew up there when it was a very living and vibrant city, most traces of my childhood have vanished. The house that I grew up in has burned down, my school has been torn down, my family is gone and most of the other landmarks from my youth have disappeared. This creates an equally surreal Wonderland experience for me whenever I go there. It is like my childhood was just a dream since I no longer have any tangible traces of it there to validate it.
The environmental works are very important to me and I will continue to do them. Once in a while however, I need to take a break from the subject because it makes me so depressed."
found at Cartwheel-Art