Steven Sickles


Artist Statement

I try to create paintings that are provocative from a distance and draw the viewer forward for closer inspection. The way in which I paint is aligned with the abstract expressionists. My works are about the elements of painting: composition, color, line, and drama. I aim to create paintings that will engage the eye long after they are hung and have become permanent fixtures. Painting as an intellectual process but the effect is what most concerns me. A painting is not finished unless it has a spontaneous, natural, and atmospheric character . I don’t bury painted images in my work, but the textures later suggest things (even to me) despite my intention to eschew depicting the natural world. The titles are tags that allow me to catalogue them in my mind. Giving them names like ‘Untitled Yellow’ means nothing to me and leaves a conversation about them to depend heavily upon a detailed list of the painting’s surface or colors. No one ever remembers the titles no one needs to try. They are for me. I steal lines from poems, songs, or novels that I particularly like. The titles are not clues to the painting’s meaning. They are abstracts in every sense of the word. Art appreciation is ultimately a matter of taste. I am not offended when someone offers an opinion about my work or walks away without saying a word. But when criticism depends upon clichés, I stop listening. At times, I find the praise I hear sounds patronizing. A considered, critical opinion will often affect my future work in a positive way. However, if you simply can’t help yourself, go ahead and lie to me.  –

Steven Sickles, 2013


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASlithy Toves  2004  Steven SicklesThe Rules That You Allude To  2010  Steven SicklesOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA Hot And Copper Sky  2012  Steven Sickles