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Rejoice!

I say that a lot. I sign many pieces with it. I do this because I believe our lives are a true happenstance. A brilliant occurence from nothingness. We are so rare. We are so unlikely. And simply being born isn't enough. From there we must survive, endure. So each morning, after our Sun departs and is reborn again. Please, for the sake of your ancestors and the Universe in general, hoist that cup of joe up and say, "Rejoice."

Ours is a soulful existence. No matter how many McMansions, polyester fabrics, auto-tunes, modified foods and social networks we surround ourselves with, we are all still native, passionate beings made of ancient matter. We are organic and we have soul.

Wood also has a warm, soulful quality. Wood has a memory. It retains smells, traumas, events. It even has a calendar. This is why I have chosen it as my medium, for its old soul. I like to think the wood in my work is in its third incarnation. First a tree, then a home and now art. If you have a room that needs a little soul, get a piece. A room can never have enough soul.

My inspiration and subject matter comes from many sources, among them: Humanism, old ballads, trickster tales, flora and fauna, science, myths and folklore, stringed instruments, brass bands, amber spirits, lady vocalists, general relativity and quantum mechanics. Some of my pieces are there just to make a short, simple statement about what's important in life. Some are more diffuse and abstract in meaning. A personal drama, an enduring line from a poem or novel, a poignant song lyric, the legacy of an important person, a fleeting thought ... these are the subjects of my art.

I use hearts often because they are a very abstract way of depicting the human soul without also employing the very subjective human form. The symbolic heart is an apt representation for a person's experience and essence. A body can immediatly conjure happiness, sorrow, youth, age, anger, bliss. These emotions can get in the way. Sometimes it's simply about the experience.

I am the son of a sailor and a social worker, the grandson of a gypsy, a dancer and a nurse. I spent my youth moving from port city to port city, watching a lot of road go by and reading World Book Encyclopedia. After my parents settled down on the Gulf Coast, I was a miscreant youth, destroying cars and taking the wrongs things too seriously and the right things not serious enough. Eventually I began replacing my imagination with experience.

I will use any salvaged wood but prefer swamp cypress and longleaf heartwood pine.

I despise waste. Particularly the waste of organic matter. Trees are magnificent. They were here before we arrived and they'll be around after we are gone. I'm making an effort to save as much wood as possible. Creating art is fun too. But beyond communicating with folks, but beyond making money ad providing for myself, beyond rescuing flooded parts, beyond reveling in the ethereal aroma of heartpine that hasn't seen the light of day in 400 years, beyond all that, I am trying to make a simple comment on waste."