I was drawn to music at an early age. Being musically inclined, I began playing French Horn as a child. I played in both the El Camino youth symphony and school orchestras. Focusing upon my musical expression, I was continually seeking progressive techniques which lead to my interest in electronic music while in high school. In my university studies at San Jose State and Sonoma State University, I went on to study electronic music composition.
In 1988 I then went to work for Sam Francis, the noted abstract expressionist painter. A long standing and close friendship between myself and Sam’s children had been established early on in childhood. This trusted relationship with Sam’s family and close circle of friends would prove to be instrumental in the pivotal change of direction in my future. Sam Francis invited me to work as his studio assistant in Palo Alto where he was painting a large commission, 20 ft by 40 ft mural, for the new united government building in Bonn, Germany. I would have the honor and unique experience of working side by side with this extraordinary artist on a daily basis. Sam would prove to be an important influence in my segue into painting, an incomparable mentor and a cherished friend to me over the years to come.
I felt privileged to be in the studio while Sam worked. I vividly recall helping him with buckets of paint and painting tools, taking photographs and archiving this period in time. It was truly an expansive experience working for Sam. Sam moved me down to Los Angeles into his big studio in Venice where I had free access to paint, paper and canvas. I started painting and writing less and less music. I picked up technical aspects of painting, and Sam’s sense of freedom and release while he painted and I was captivated by his love of pure pigment and his vibrant palette.
One thing I realized while working for Sam was that with music and painting the experience might be in a different sense but the expression is the same. I turned fully to painting over 20 years ago and I felt then as I feel now that finally I found my place in the world. I am a painter and I love the daily challenge of working through problems of composition and palette and finding deeper meaning in the interaction of color and form as well as the constant flow of problems and challenges met with some form of resolution be it right or wrong.
My current work allows me to explore multiple themes one of which is a series of portraits that show the different faces of institutional discrimination and its affect on family histories. Another avenue of investigation is a series of paintings that delve into the theme of environment and endangered species.
Museums and gallery shows in the U.S. and around the world: Los Angeles, CA; San Francisco, CA; San Jose, CA; New York, NY; Yokohama, Japan; Taipei, Taiwan; Honolulu, HI; Bogota, Columbia; Chihuahua, Mexico; Naantali, Finland; Kyoto, Japan; Tokyo, Japan; and Provincia da Frisone, Italy.
One-person shows: George Billis Gallery, Los Angeles and New York; Bluerider Art, Taipei, Taiwan; California State University, Los Angeles; West Valley College, Saratoga, CA; Sandra Lee Gallery, San Francisco, CA; Smith Andersen North, San Anselmo, CA; Los Angeles Art Association, Los Angeles, CA; Bandini Art, Culver City, CA
Museum exhibitions: Japanese American Museum, San Jose, CA, de Saisset Museum, Santa Clara, CA; Torrance Art Museum, Torrance, CA; Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA; Oceanside Museum of Art, Oceanside, CA; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA); Triton Museum, Santa Clara, CA; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA; Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, CA;
Permanent collections: de Saisset Museum, Santa Clara, CA; Resnick Collection, Los Angeles, CA; Microsoft Collection, Redmond, WA; Genencor Internatinal Collection, Palo Alto, CA
Featured in books “Psychological Perspectives” the quarterly Journal of Jungian Thought; “Centerpoint Now” Commemorating the 75th anniversary of the United Nations.
Magazine and news article features: The Santa Clara Review, Metro San Jose, Fabrik, Artscene, LA Weekly, The Creators Project, Fraction Magazine, The Art Newspaper, UK, Art Ltd., and Artweek.
George Billis Gallery , Los Angeles
2716 South La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90034
10F No 25-1,
Sec 4 Ren’ai Road
Taipei City 106, Taiwan
+866 2 2752 2238
133 Sichuan Middle Rd., Huangpu Dist., Shanghai
13636 Ventura Blvd.
Unit # 307
Sherman Oaks, CA 91423
Sonoma State University , Electronic Music composition 1984-86
San Jose State University , Electronic Music Composition 1986-89