Calvin Collins

"...the so-called traumatic experience is not an accident, but the opportunity for which the child has been patiently waiting - had it not occurred, it would have found another - in order that its life became a serious matter...".

~W. H. Auden

Calvin Collins drawings and paintings are remotely connected to the experiences of loss, displacement, separation, isolation and ultimately, transformation. Being an adopted, bi-racial child and having little knowledge of his biological parents (or their whereabouts) he is personally and inextricably connected to the concept of loss and displacement as both of his adoptive parents are deceased.

Collins works take their inspiration from those mysterious, unnameable places and incidents that haunt our everyday moments and our dream existence-- a peculiar, paradoxical state when everything happens very quickly (or sometimes quite slowly), a mixture of consciousness and unconsciousness, of fear, pleasure and pain. His drawings are an alchemic cocktail of psychic intuition, pop and personal symbolism & mythology, whim and purpose, expressing that which, once glimpsed, becomes an open secret, simultaneously knowable and hermetic.

Whereas Collins drawings function as mysterious documentation, an otherworldly, emblematic language, his paintings tend to traffic heavily in the realm of identity politics and allegory. "I am emboldened as I am fascinated at times by my experience as a bi-racial person living in a world that is trying politely to adjust to its post-colonial skin and all that identity encompasses". Pluralistic and whimsical in nature, these works revel just as much in the possibility and quality of materials as they do in narrative.