Everything I can do
you can do better
an ongoing series started in 2009 (in lieu of an MFA)

    In a conversation about artistic influences, I was introduced to John Perreault's idea of a family tree-- a way of placing yourself into the creative lineage. Later, it came up in another conversation that if I could have chosen my pop-idol parents, it would have been Klaus Nomi and Nina Hagen. Then another flippant comment I made, that instead of studying for an MFA, I would re-create all of the influential art pieces which inspire me.  

   Following these snippets of ideas, I began a series of re-photography and embodiment photos, both posing as my heroes, and replicating my favorite images.  

   I started with Wolfgang Tillmans whose images have always inspired me both for their beauty and for their brutal honesty. I tried my luck as David Bowie, shaving off my eyebrows for the makeup. The next day, I wondered, "What else can I do with no eyebrows?" So I tried my luck as Klaus Nomi. This is an open-ended series, I continue to make more and each year I seem to change the title. 


   In May of 2006 I wrote a little song whose main lyric was, "Everything I can do you can do better/Everything that I can do you can do best" - Today that sounds like a good name for these photos. I'm likely to change my mind.

 as Ziggy Stardust

 after Bruce Nauman's Fountain

 after Wolfgang Tillman's Like Praying I + II, 1994

 as Klaus Nomi

  after Václav Zykmund's Self-Portrait, 1937.

 after Wolfgang Tillman's Summer Still Life, 1995