Roger Allan Cleaves
When a person looks at my work they should see a unique story concerning the heroic, a discussion about social abstract art, and mundane moments that every living human being can relate. My works are a mixture of autobiographical tales, icons, pop culture, and an examination of classic works of art. When I create symbols and characters it is for the purpose of narrative storytelling that focuses on contemporary times.
The linking factor, the epic adventure of an ordinary being with heroic capabilities, flows through my two dimensional and three dimensional works of art. Heroic ideas intrigue my taste. What really separates the common from the heroic? I believe it is the ability to find opportunities for greatness in the face of probable failure. Answering those questions is the struggle of my life as well as my studio practice.
My practice is my focused attempt to harmonize ambiguity. My created world exists is an abstract and chaotic landscape. Bringing order to this chaos and reconfiguring these abstract elements into more concrete forms is my attempt to obtain familiarity with the unknown. The unknown for me is making sense of what it means to be alive. So my research and studio practice focuses on subject matter that examines the nuances of the human struggle. I’m challenging the viewer as well as my own creative aptitude by presenting specific questions.
Can beauty exist in the mundane and the macabre? Can something highly intellectual be stripped to its essence and still be understood? Using satire, humor, and art history I entice the viewer to search for that beauty and deeper level of investigation. The symbols and icons are presented and the viewer is allowed the freedom to piece together the information. I’m interested in the idea of a complete story that is not organized into written sentences and chapters. A complete and true story about contemporary times is one that that says a lot of beauty exists in the bleakest days.