I was born and raised on the borderline of two of New York City’s largest boroughs during the turbulent 1960s and 70s, in a family with angry Appalachian roots, rival to those of the Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s. Growing up in a home that mirrored the hostilities of the times, my siblings and I lived a free range childhood in a town with a bad reputation for urban jungle.  A rough and tumble lifestyle, it taught (at a very early age), that in order to survive unscathed, you need to be aware of what was happening around you.  And around us were race riots, gangsters, blackouts, free-for-all looting, Son-of-Sam shootings, drinks, drugs and death, and a myriad of other dicey happenings.  If you survived, you knew you were lucky; but also knew that even in the best of times luck was a fickle friend. One who could turn on you on a dime.

In my early teens, I had the remarkable opportunity to mentor with Indian Space artist Robert Barrell at his Forest Park School of Art in Woodhaven.   I studied with him for the next ten years, and afterwards taught the children's art class on Saturday mornings for another five.  Barrell's studio was an amazing place, with a wide range of artists and talents. Led by this George Bridgman and Hans Hofmann taught, Art Students League, WPA painter, political satirist, and remarkable talent, Barrell's studio was a rare and unexpected sanctuary.

In 1985, with a Bachelors of Arts from Queens College of the City University of New York under my belt, I was ready to "launch" my art career in a world that neither recognized nor welcomed female artists.   Determined to avoid the starving artist routine, which I know all too well,  I have worn many different hats from bank teller to shoe salesman, secretary to sandwich-maker. I have sold consumer goods, bug spray, speed starch and oven cleaners.  I have worked in hospitality, law, finance, and non-profit.  I can run the rat race with the best of them, while at the same time taking notes for future works of art. As much as I hate it, I find inspiration every day. I have always known that my work would not be created in a vacuum; it is a direct product of surviving contemporary America.  Repeatedly, I find myself drawn to the invisible in society because I too have been invisible. I am drawn to the every woman, because I am every woman.  It is about the dangers that lurk around every corner, because I have witnessed them firsthand.  

Early in my career, I found myself drawn to the obscure, odd, or the unusual.  The little secrets that are there for the discovery if you take the time to look, really look, at what is happening around you.  I have long felt that my role as an artist is that of a "spy" with a mission is to watch, document the stories of the creatures that inhabit the world around me.  This journey has taken me across the planet to the far reaches of the Australian outback, Europe, Ireland, and then right back to square one to Northeastern, Central Pennsylvanian Appalachia, where my family’s roots are found.  I embrace the human anthropology discovered along the way, connecting one to another, and all of us to the whole, and celebrate our shared humanity.

My early works reflect a classical approach to oil painting.  After an Italian residency in 2013, I fell in love with some of the elements of the Arte Povera movement, and their use of raw, very unglamorous and unromantic materials.  It was then I began to explore painting on other surfaces such as burlap and slate. I especially love using discarded slate from a former state-run (1885-1996) condemned psychiatric hospital.  Now a hotspot for urbex explorers, it provides a wealth of unusual poignant pieces of history on which to paint.  Slate itself is quite conducive to quick and energetic studies.  The added symbolism using a piece of broken shelter for portraits seems appropriate for our times.

Four concurrent series in paintings are:

American Toile - using on burlap, is intentionally rough, and highlights ordinary people who contribute to the patterns of our day, with idiosyncrasies, battle scars, victories and losses. 

Wilderness of Salt - also on burlap with found objects, parallels the historic and contemporary plight of women (the eternal #metoo) and the sad fact that, as far as we have come, there is still a long way to go for equality - in both the arts and the world in general. 

Lullaby - on burlap, is for our crazy MAGA mad, pussy-grabbing world - when a bit of solace is called for, with a series of modern day lullabies, hoping to ease anxiety and everyday angst. 

#brokenwomenmendstronger - is a series of portraits on, remnants from the condemned Kings Park Psychiatric Hospital, depicting women who, inspite of violent life experiences, have emerged victorious. 

All come with the reminder:   Irregularities and variations in the colors and texture of this fabric are characteristic of the fabric adding to its natural beauty, and is in no way to be considered as defective.

I also have several series using digital photography.

Chasing Saturn wraps personal memories and dreams into the mythology of the Roman/Greek deity. 

Bird on a Wire is a photo-journal reflecting on my own lineage.  With a diaspora to nowhere, it is my journey to search for a lost tribe, in a family fraught with dysfunction.  Bird on a Wire explores the personal backroads of America leading from Appalachian roots to inner city New York.

Wake of the Dutchman embraces a life-long love of the sea and ships.

Eighty Miles a Day reflects on a 20,000+ miles a year commute to New York City.

Select works from all of the above can be found on this website.