Replete with references to the ancient frescoes and mosaics of the Etruscans, Romans and Byzantines, my large-scale paintings on paper capture a timeless moment through a contemporary eye.Inspired by the sacred and folk arts and the vanishing art of hand-painted signage, I create portraits of diverse individuals, gathering images when traveling and at home in New York City. For the past 8 years I have concentrated on a series of figurative works painted in oil, gouache or acrylic gouache on paper. At times I incorporate collaged decorative elements from a variety of sources, including old catalogs, field guides and vintage books into the work. I use color and pattern to evoke emotion and tell stories of daily life, where the viewer is drawn into an intimate world. My work is clearly inspired by the traditional, but the impact of personal history is evident in the quiet presentation of issues of gender and race. This is a portrait of my husband, the Jamaican-born sculptor, Arthur Simms.