My Story

 

 

I’m largely a self taught artist. I was born in Los Angeles, CA in 1958 of Anglo/Hispanic parents. My family was a group of highly creative individuals, whose encouragement inspired me to develop my own artistic voice.

I grew up in the city of Downey CA, and during my formative years, I learned oil painting from my father, a bacteriologist and amateur representational oil painter. At age eight, my interest in photography began when I was given a Kodak brownie camera from my mother.

At age ten I began working in my first darkroom. My paternal grandmother, who was a gift basket designer, taught me the fundamentals of design. For many years I studied woodworking & metal work with my paternal grandfather, who also was an amateur inventor, and worked for Hamms Brewery as a master machinist.

In 1968, I lost my best friend, my older brother Stephen, who was only eleven, to leukemia. Losing him, gave me a deep burning passion for life, and I have always tried to make the most of it. Life is a blessing and such a tremendous gift!


In high school, I took over a dozen art classes, then at the tender age of 17, enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. My service to my country included working as an acounting clerk, as well as a tour of duty on the Island of Okinawa.

After earning my Honorable Discharge,  I went to Cerritios College, taking criminal justice/business, and general education classes. I left school, took a neon design course with Richard Jenkins (Co-Founder MONA, Museum of Neon Art) and began working as a neon designer. I apprenticed for years with several neon tubebenders, becoming a neon tubebender-artist and later taught the craft.

In the late 80's, the opportunity presented itself to hire on with North American Van Lines, and work/travel around the country. I worked for the Electronic/Tradeshow Division, and was appalled at the amount of old mainframes/personal computers that were being thrown into the trash. At this point in time, "E" recycling was non existent, I began serious dumpster diving, and started collecting computer parts to include in all 
my work.

Leaving NAVL in the early nineties, I began a series of day jobs, to fund my assemblage art. In 2001-2002, I ran Sunyata Gallery in San Pedro, and was the Assistant Director of the Don O' Melveny Gallery on Melrose, in West Hollywood (later on Wilshire Blvd) from 2003 to 2007. I worked as a Licensed Painting Contractor
from 2004 to 2012.
 

Moving out of the city in 2002, to the San Bernardino Mountains, was a boyhood dream come true. I lived full time in the mountains until 2007. From 2008 until 20012, I maintained studios in Apple Valley and Sedona AZ. Retired from my contracting biz, I am now working full time as an artist, and maintain studios in Cedarpines Park, and Temecula CA.


 

My Eco Art has been seen in over 2 dozen solo exhibitions, (including my first museum show in 1996) and over a 100 group shows. Widely collected, my work has earned several awards, as well as two Museum Residencies. Reviewed in numerous publications, my work has been seen in the Huffington Post, Channel 4 News (Flagstaff AZ) etc ..., and my work was recently called “haptically charged” in a review by Kristen T Woodward (Resident Curator Artist2Artist-Professor Albright College  Reading PA)