I am a multi-disciplined creative who straddles the mural art, fine art, and decorative art worlds. My background is in scenic art painting drops for theaters and I currently work in historic preservation. I have been fortunate to paint murals and backdrops for the past 19 years and I believe that site specific art plays a significant role in enriching human experience as it makes meaningful connections to context. Murals have become a huge part of the way I connect to the communities I am in. Murals are not simply painted in a space, but they also become a part of a shared space. I paint murals as a chance to connect to the location, individuals, and the community. It is an opportunity for me to learn and build relationships along the way. There is a complexity to murals that opens space for people to take a moment to pause and reflect. I choose to paint flowers because they are universal and carry a multitude of historic and cultural meanings. My intention is for these flowers to condense moments, reconcile polarities, uplift hearts and inspire joy. Murals are owned by the public which allows me to present a flower to each city as a gesture of appreciation, emblem of possibilities and power to the community. I research and select flowers that are either local or have a special meaning for the space.
I am passionate about painting in medical centers because it allows me to be a part of healing through art. Healing is something we all need right now. A mural with images of nature can influence a patient’s outcome and promote engagement with various treatments. The British Medical Journal quotes R. Cork, who said that “art is able to provide solace, exhilaration, and satisfaction in a huge variety of different forms. Above all it can humanize a building, infusing an often soulless and impersonal environment with affirmation…many critical moments in our lives occur there—from birth through to death—and they ought to take place in surroundings which honour their true significance.” I believe that these images of PA wildlife, even though representations, have the power to improve health and well-being and hopefully evoke hope for patients, visitors, and staff.
Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital -Pediatric Specialty Unit Mural
"Dancing with Bees"
"Dancing with Bees"
Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital Pediatric Infusion Office
Pinnacle Health Hospital-Maternity Ward
For Pinnacle UPMC I chose to paint the beautiful blue Agapanthus flower. This flower belongs to the family Agapanthaceae also commonly known as the Lily of the Nile, African Blue Lily, and African Lily. In Afrikaans they are known as Agapant, in Xhosa they are called Isicakathi and in Zulu they are known as Ubani. The symbolic meaning and entomology of Agapanthus is derived from the Greek root agape meaning “love” and anthos meaning “flower”. This flower is a flower of love or a "love flower". Many flowers have traditionally been assigned symbolic meanings. As flowers are the actual reproductive systems of plants, most general flower meanings deal with rebirth. The flower Agapanthus is special because it is a plant used in various medicines for fertility and pregnancy. South African Xhosa people believe the flower to be both medicinal and magical as a plant for fertility and pregnancy.It is used in various medicines taken during pregnancy and a necklace of the roots can be worn as a charm to bring healthy, strong babies into the world. I want this painted flower to represent an exciting new chapter for the women and families going through the hall with their new baby and to bring this good fortune to them.