The evolution of the Flipside started in a advanced drawing class in 1973. The professor introduced the class to the concepts of Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung about the conscious and subconscious mind and how they affect the human condition. The simplest form of the concept of automatic writing is what is called a doodle. The introduction of these concepts were applied to the use of a grid and created designs by connecting, automatically the corners diagonally to create shapes or patterns called systemic designs. Graduate school was spent investigating these concepts with problems in color theory.
After grad school the ideas were continued as seen in the earliest examples of the pen and ink works but without the grid, more free form association. One thing leads to the next, et-cetera. These works were continued off and on over the next decade while the landscape paintings were the works being shown publicly. Thus the beginning of what has become the Flipside.
The work evolved to representational imagery starting in 1981 with the still unfinished painting (The Magician I) and continued into the mid eighties utilizing simple architectural shapes to clearly identifiable imagery, windows, door, stairs to objects like plates and oranges to iconic images. These works are the pieces that led to the creation of the three dimensional works in frames first and then boxes.
The first of the sculptures were created utilizing plain wooden frames 3/4” D and are seen in the first two works, “Creative Process (the construction)” and “Lost Time”. The second work also employs the first application of lights operating on AA batteries, thus minimal. The next group of works takes the ideas into the box from 3”D to 5”D and uses hard wired lights with a 12 volt transformer. These works, starting with “Ladder Moon” through “Venus on the Moon” use a variety of lights with one switch inline.
The piece “The World Stage” was the first to utilize more than one switch. This work uses two switches to activate six lights. The following work, “Creative Process, the construction w/lights” utilizes four switches with six lights. These applications began to extend the possibilities of the boxes, creating more lighting effects and shadows. The next work, “The Four Seasons Hotel”, utilizes eight switches and ten lights. Each creation would suggest what the lighting possibilities could be and thus would evolve with the work.
1971/72 – In my senior year at VCU with Sal Federico in advanced drawing class continued Sal’s intro to the conscious/subconscious mind through the use of the grid. Grad school thesis based on the Grid and close pacting forms, systemic design.
1970’s After Grad, School – Automatic writing and surrealism how the two ideas relate and combine The Doodle? First works happen in the form of a doodle, automatically. Returning to representational images by the mid eighties yet staying true to the automatic nature of the ideas evolution.
1980’s Teaching years – 1981 the big painting (4’x4”) first of the new image based works still unfinished. Series of FIVE gouache paintings 84-85’.
1990’s The Third Dimension – Beginning 88-89’ Two works utilizing picture frames, beginning of the boxes. Building the house influenced the boxes in terms of construction, mid 90’s. Adding lights to the boxes, making actual boxes 3-5(+) inches deep. The continuation of the idea / embracing influences, Rene Magritte, Gregory Gillessepe, Andy Goldsworthy