I'm a self-taught artist and began painting in oils around the age of twelve. Although I describe myself as a surrealist, mostly for lack of a better definition, my work doesn't seem to fit neatly into any particular genre. Last year I decided to move in a different direction and began adding figurative elements to my work. Having spent the last 20 years producing primarily abstract images this seemed somewhat like starting over but I feel there is a consistency of style connecting my older work with my recent work. Adding figurative elements allows me to address issues of cultural mores and sexual taboos, producing images that are visually startling with more emotional impact. I agree with Magritte that an artist's work should "evoke a sense of mystery" and feel that the best advice ever given to an artist was impresario Sergei Diaghilev's command to Jean Cocteau "Astonish Me"