Artist's Statement

Reflections • Oil on Canvas • 16 x 20"

My imagination is fueled by the world around me, by places and people and the thoughts and feelings they evoke. I make images that express these concepts and emotions. I want my images to convey both the natural world and deeper truths, which are wordless and need to be expressed through metaphor.

Drawing is the method in which my image making begins and through which it evolves. Whether the source of the work is from direct observation, a photo I have taken or from my imagination, it is always initially expressed as a drawing. Ultimately, the work may become an etching or a painting, but at its core is always drawing. Drawing has a tactile directness that connects the mind and the hand. It is a two-way connection where the drawing evokes thought and thought evokes drawing. An unintentional gesture of the hand can change the concept in a direction that the mind alone would not have traveled.

Etching on a copper plate is, by its very nature, a process with many steps from its beginning through its completion. It is a process which is well suited to my way of working. I am able to develop a drawing which evolves as it proceeds. Values and forms, must be decided, resolved and executed during the drawing. Patterns, made from lines, cross lines and stipples become spontaneously obvious to me while I work. Patterns and values can be built and enhanced by the layering of successive etches. When the plate is inked and printed, the inverted image becomes an entity onto itself; the whole greater than the sum of its parts.

Painting adds liquidity to my drawing process. The lines and strokes glide across the surface, creating possibilities unachievable with pencil or etching tool. The surface I am painting on also evolves as the painting progresses. At first you are painting on a gesso surface and soon you are painting on other layers of previously applied paint. Sometimes I am painting on fresh paint and the layers can be blended. At other times, painting on a dried layer of paint gives me the chance to create transparency or use the paint opaquely.

Eric Goldberg