As an artist my work has always been informed by several years living and growing up in Japan. The millennia-long traditions that have vested their traditional culture with respect for the artist’s hand in everything from drawings, paintings, sculpture, and even modern packaging has played a tremendous role in my ideas as to how artwork should be crafted, not produced. The artist should be more of a Shaman and less of a CEO. The work has also been informed by the kidnapping and disappearance of my 4-year-old son in 1990. This is also why I draw in voids and shadows, what can be seen and what cannot.

I inhabit, view, and appraise the world around me with an eye as to how it can be translated into my chosen medium. Like a cinematographer I am constantly framing the compositions and potential narrative storylines I confront daily. Hundreds of photographs are taken in search of the vocabulary and the moments appropriate to my vision. These are then culled, recomposed and formatted into the final composition.

My choice of media mixes drawing and carving. Using a dremel and a router lines are carved by hand into 84” x 60” x ½” plexiglass sheets. The lines are virtually invisible in the plexiglass itself. They are only revealed when the light hits them and casts their shadows upon the wall behind them. As such, the drawings that become visible are only memories of the carved lines that have traveled from the surface of the plexiglass to the wall projected by the light that illuminates the work, just as the images are only memories as I have chosen to see them. The visible lines are very subtle and require attention by the viewer. There is no hyperbole, drama or flash, just slow painstaking craftsmanship.

“Ghosts in the Machine” is a commentary of life in the NYC subway. It is a view I see daily when riding the train. Like ants, or cogs in the machine, people attempt to separate themselves from the harshness of the mechanized subterranean world we are forced to inhabit. The tiled walls are given new life by imbuing them with Mercator map-like qualities, designs that are also reminiscent of sunspot activity, realms that exist outside the claustrophobic, dehumanizing environment. The piece took one year to create, allowing time to breathe its life, view its reality in ways unobtainable from a fabricator or Vector program. From the preliminary photography, to the initial drawings at scale, to the final carving and framing process, everything was done by me. The lines themselves are mostly very fine in nature, in general taking me twenty minutes to carve a 2 square inch area. The scale of the piece is deliberate. It is of a size that the viewer, and their cast shadows, become intrinsically part of the piece itself, which is why the figures are all simple silhouettes, allowing the viewer to inhabit that frame. At 84” x 240” it is meant to let the viewer inhabit the space on a scale that is almost the same as in reality.