My love of art started with my mom introducing me to her passion for art, specifically for the Impressionist Movement. We would go to museums monthly and she would talk for hours about the Impressionist. She would explain to me what makes the Impressionists unique by breaking away from classical painting. I was constantly surrounded by art because my home has numerous paintings on our walls. My mother’s art collection was displayed on our walls as if we were in a salon. There were a variety of subject matters that consisted of portraits, landscapes and animals. I was always the most drawn to the portraits because it showed the many emotions that humans experience.

I started to paint in the 7th grade where I was instructed to create a self portrait by observing myself in a mirror. I created a colorful cubist self portrait with a blank stare. A few years later in the 9th grade my artwork developed into a more serious matter that showed the darker side to life. I had a cousin who was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma when he was 13 and passed away at the age of 17 . When he first became sick I was 4 and he passed away when I was 8. The only memories I have of him is when he was sick in the hospital and not who he was as a person. I had a lot of guilt about this because he was very beloved by my family. I started to create a series of four paintings, each representing each year that he was sick that allowed me to heal. Throughout the paintings I showed the many emotions that he might have experienced during his treatments and the longer they were going on it showed the toll on his body. In the portraits I have created many angular bold shapes that show the sadness and anger on his face. This led down to a path of painting subject matters that are dealing with the devastating side of humanity. 

In my undergraduate career at Skidmore College I continued my study of painting portraits. I continued to paint my cousin, but I was able to move on to other members of my family. I painted my grandmother that I never met and my Nana who was suffering from dementia. Painting her was extremely mentally exhausting and artistically difficult because she was the first family member that I really knew who had a slow death. Through these different relationships that I dealt with death I was drawn towards European Expressionism, specifically the artists of Max Beckmann, Richard Gertsl, Emil Nolde, and Alexej von Jawlensky.

Today I have involved my art into expanding other subject matters besides the ones that I love. I am now painting the victims of the Ukrainian War. These paintings consist of showing the gruesome realties for civilians. I didn’t realize how impactful how one of my paintings would be so personal for me. Over the summer of 2022 my family and I hosted a Ukrainian exchange student through a program called You Lead. It’s a leadership program that allows Ukrainian students to learn about different forms of leadership and can take those skills to rebuild Ukraine, once the war is over. During Labor Day weekend we had a party for the other exchange students, chaperons and host families. One of the chaperons was looking at one of my pieces of art. She stopped at a piece where a woman was bleeding all over the face and was a victim of a bombing. She explained that was her mother’s best friend and that the bombing happened on the second day of the war. That moment was the first time I realized how powerful my painting can be for others.