DREAMS, HEROES, AND SHOW HOUSES
Aspiring to make sure every child has a hero; someone they can believe in as well as someone that believes in them.
Throughout my childhood, my grandmother Bessie served as a constant presence and guiding force in the development of my artistic talent. She slowed down her own life to examine mine and was able to see the untapped and unfocused creativity that lived inside me. She made it a priority to cultivate my creative explorations by taking me to museums and by purchasing me my first paint set. Bessie sat patiently as I showed her every single element of a drawing that I had just finished and would look into my eyes with a gentle smile and a loving gaze.
Because Bessie believed in me, I learned early on to believe in myself and in my creativity. She would tell me to look at the drawing again and would offer constructive criticism; perhaps I could draw that leg better or make this tree look a bit more realistic. To this day, I can often hear her advice as I am creating art: “remember to study what you are looking at, because it matters.” Taking time to focus on something mattered. Making something beautiful out of pure imagination was what being an artist meant and artists, like magicians, can make something out of nothing at all. This was a huge realization for me.
From these experiences with Bessie came a dream that has never wavered. By the time I was seven, I knew that I was destined to be an artist, no matter what. I would never allow myself to be limited by the fear surrounding the myth of the tortured, starving artist. I have never experienced torture in creativity. My work feeds my soul and allows my spirit to rise in my chest. I have been brought to tears over the majesty of a sunrise and over the beauty of a sculpture of a collapsed form draped across his mother’s lap. Although Bessie wasn’t in my life for long, she was there long enough to plant a seed. Because of Bessie, I have been able to devote my life confidently to the fulfillment of my dreams.
I choose to be a sponsor of the Kips Bay Show House because I know that my contribution will go to the Boys and Girls Club of America. Through my sponsorship, I am helping to develop a space of creativity to inspire the next generation. I am honored to join a collective of talented designers who are coming together for the Kips Bay Show House and who are prioritizing this effort while juggling their own busy schedules, client projects, and business responsibilities. Together, we will help make something beautiful out of nothing in order to raise money to inspire the next generation of creatives and leaders. Our work will help ensure that efforts and organizations like the Boys and Girls Club have the funding to continue to create heroes for a boy or girl that may not have one.