My work is a form of a personal narrative dealing with the universal themes of alienation, isolation and the search for developing a personal and spiritual foundation. I began to explore areas from my childhood: times of freedom, exploration, and wonder, but also the abundant risk. In addition I started to re-examine some childhood traumas that have infused much of my work; in the process, I developed a unique technique, combining elements of both painting with sculptural etching using wood as my canvas. The process involves both addition and subtraction, evolving themes and mood. Often I juxtapose familiar images from childhood with more iconic images to evoke both the freedom of the early perceptions, as well as the inherent dangers, both unique to myself and shared with others. I believe we all develop traits unconsciously to navigate through our lives. Though we have had different experiences, we all have had moments of similar feelings. I try to capture those moments and memories. I try to create the feeling of the childhood memory that is so large it feels like its looming over you even years later. I create my work on a large scale to give it intensity: I want it to be bigger than life with the feeling of being so uncomfortable you don't even want to be in your own skin, that you have to disconnect with reality. It isn’t until you sit down, reflect and recognize that it is only a feeling, and feelings come and go. I am using my art to work out all that has shaped and formed me into the person I am today, and who I can become in the future. Each composition shares a moment trapped inside of me as a personal vignette.
- Kyle Ripp