Painting is an intensely personal vision that comes from some inner core of yourself. It is intuitive and its meaning can be elusive, sometimes even to the painter. Each painting is like a piece of something that you spend a lifetime trying to figure out. It's a revelation of the unseen, the hidden.

My work is about relationships—and about separateness—but fundamentally the paintings are about the self. I'm interested in that place of tension between the containment and the expression of feeling, and in how to portray that visually.

The paintings depict individual men, but they aren't portraits. The men inhabit a particular place, but it isn't real. It's an ambiguous, interior territory, where things are and are not what they seem. The paintings are like stages upon which dramas play out—theatrical moments—and the men who inhabit them are the actors. The reality lies in the emotional core of this world, intensely felt but highly contained. My model Lorenzo called it "emotional purgatory." For me the paintings are often as much about what isn't seen as what is.

Although they're a group of anonymous men, they're at the same time self-portraits in their way. Perhaps these are worlds of their own making—worlds with outsides and edges and unknown terrains beyond, just out of reach. This is the region where desire and doubt, longing and reticence, intimacy and uncertainty coexist. It speaks of absence as much as presence.

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