For me, portraits are rooted in a primal practice looking and being looked at. In my work making portraits is a search for connection. The philosopher Paul Valery wrote:
once gazes interlock there are no longer quite two persons and its hard for either to remain alone. This exchange … effects … a transposition, a metathesis, a chiasm of two ‘destinies’, two points of view. You take my appearance, my image, and I take yours. You are not I, since you see me and I don’t see myself. What is missing for me is this ‘I’ whom you can see. And what you miss is the ‘you’ I see.
(in Mearleau- Ponty, M. Signs. 1964:231.)
Though the portraits I make can seem quite abstract, they are all, and always, made in the presence of a sitter. More than any kind of recognizable likeness, I aim to capture a sense of the person.