“My images are conceived as icons of the human figure; free of identity and personality; liberated from time, past and future; now joined to the eternal moment. My paintings attempt to unify the image of the body into the space that surrounds it. With its collapsed skin line the contour or boundary that once separated both graphically and psychologically the image from its universe is now opened to its milieu is now submissive not to alienation but to its unity with the cosmos. The synergy of the object to its environment, the physical to metaphysical is a core concept of my work.”
Harrison Storms’s artwork confronts the spectator with who they are and what it means to be human. Through his process of building up and stripping down his renderings of the human figure, Storms unlocks the synergy between the object and its environment, and between the physical and the metaphysical. Drawing influence from Michelangelo’s Rondanini Pieta and Crucifixion drawings, Italian fresco, and Ken Wilder’s philosophical inquiries, Storms creates images that portray the inevitability of change and its consequences.
Basing his images on the Kouros, a classic Greek male figure, Storms’s works are in part free from identity and personality and liberated from time. Yet, through the process of creating each artwork, the Kouros is invested with a life that stretches backwards and forwards through time, linking the images to the eternal moment.
Storms chooses materials for their directness and simplicity. Created from hollow core doors, gesso, limestone sand, ink, and acrylic paint, Storms builds the body of the Kouros. Then, using brushes, rags, pneumatic grinders, or even a crow quill pen, he grinds, scrapes, or rubs away at the layers, only to go back and add to the image. The final image is the product of a lengthy process of making and unmaking.
Through this process of building and unbuilding, Storms transcends the impersonal Kouros and follows himself into a deeply personal artistic space that also has ecumenical meaning. Through his manipulation of the image, Storms experiences the complexity of evolution and duplicates its selection process. The artist is both connected to his work and to the autonomous activities of the universe. The result of this long process is a layered architectural image in places exposing the particular life of the inner layers that, as with the body, are otherwise unknown and mysterious to the naked eye.
Essentially, these paintings unify the image of the Body into the space that surrounds it. With the collapsed skin line- the contouring boundary that once graphically and psychologically separated the image from its universe- the images open into the true reality of limitless consciousness. The iconic Kouros, once in opposition to its milieu, is now submissive to its unity with the cosmos. Like the human body and the human being, these works are at once whole in themselves, but also integrated with their immediate environments and reaching out beyond the now and into the unknown depth of the metaphysical plane.