BIO

I was born in New York City in 1966. Hell yeah! We lived in the West Village until I was about five, when we moved up to Rockland county. My parents needed to escape from the madness and we did. After a couple years in a real creepy house filled with death masks and ghosts we moved to the Hudson Highlands. The town was Garrison and it was beautiful. So was the creepy house but in a different way. From second grade to high school that was home. Outdoor living at its best. The light in the Hudson Highlands is orange and diffused. Super warm. The air is heavy in the summer and cold as shit in the winter. Boats move up and down the river constantly blowing their foghorns. Meanwhile the trains whiz up and down both shores screeching their brakes and pummeling the tracks with their weight and speed. Kids took care of themselves until they couldn't and then they'd go home.

James I O'Neill is the high school I graduated from. I was a shitty student. I was daydreaming all the time about being anywhere but there. I liked sports though, and by the time I was a junior I liked girls, too. A lot. I also loved painting.

When I was a freshman the school's toughest kid sat next to me in art class. He liked the way I drew trees so we became friends. One day I came to class with a black eye from getting punched by this senior who loved to punch me. My friend asked what had happened. I told him. The bully never walked down the same hall as me again. In fact, no one ever beat me up again. Art is beautiful.

Punk rock changed my life. Mundanity was over. It happenned when I heard the song "YOU STUPID JERK" by the ANGRY SAMOANS. It was a 30-second song. It went - "you stupid jerk, I can't take it no more, your face makes me wanna puke and your mother's a whore, aaahhhhhh, you stupid jerk." Genius. I got a mohawk, pierced my ears and headed down to the city every chance I got. The danger and complete unpredictability of those early punk shows was magic. My favorites spots were THE ROCK HOTEL and CB's. I got my ass kicked there all the time. Nobody knew my friend from art class.

I went to Choate for a year so I could learn something. I had a 780 combined on the SAT's. Fuck them. Choate was great though. I couldn't cheat there. Much. I had a great Art Teacher. Reggie Bradford. He turned me on to photorealism and the fact that there was tons more to be explored within that genre.

College was another monster. I just wanted to do my own thing. I spent a year at Denison but quit. One of the classes required was Intro to the Old Testament. It was incredible. Dr. Eisenbies taught it. All I remember now is that he said True Love is being able to forgive anything. I thought he was full of shit at the time but now I agree. Anyway, I was hooked. I quit school and started hitchihiking around the U.S.

The only kind of people that pick up hitchhikers are freaks, religious folks getting points, and lonely people looking for company. I loved every minute of it and i got deeper and deeper into religious deep sea fishing. Soon though, I realized life on the road as a prophet was gonna be tougher than I expected so I went back to college.

I finished at The University of Washington as a comparative religion major. I compared them and came to a sudden enlightenment. There is no enlightenment. Ah, freedom.

Next move. San Francisco. I became a model. An agency from Paris asked me to come over and do the shows in 1991. I got there January 15th, the day we bombed Iraq the first time.

Living in Europe was amazing. There I was travelling all over living out of a suitcase for a couple years seeing places I never would have been able to see if I had still been a false prophet. By 1994 I headed back to New York City. Full circle.

Watch out for full circles because that's when the next circle starts. I got cancer. Hodgkins lymphoma. I did not have insurance. I had to spend everything I had so I could get into a clinic. That's a clinical name for "students get to practice on you." My favorite practice was the bone marrow test when the student could not get the marrow out of the hip but the doctor insisted he try again and again and finally he did it. It reminded me of getting my ass kicked in CB's. White pain. White pain is good because it's so painful you cease to feel it. After a year of chemo and radiation Mt. Sinai saved my life. My nurse, Cathy, is a true prophet.

While I did cancer I really painted my ass off. I smoked a lot of pot to keep the nausea away and being high really got me in the zone. I pumped out a ton of colorful stuff, partly because I thought I was gonna die and I didn't have much of a legacy except in my own head.

Two years later I met my best friend. Toby. I saw her walk into the Irving Plaza and fell in love with her. She thought I was an idiot. I got a friend to invite her to one of my band's shows at The New Music Cafe. She came. I fell in love with her more. I tried to be cool and tricked her.

One time my Dad told me if I really thought I had a girl that I could live my life with "get her pregnant." That was maybe the most fucked up advice my Dad ever gave me.

I got her pregnant and we had a great shotgun wedding.

We had Lulu. A gift. (I was told I was sterile from chemo. I didn't want to tell you that before because it didn't go good with the bad advice story thing with my Dad.)

We were broke. I did my first art show and made some loot to pay rent.

Then we were broke again.

When I had my dance with death I told myself if I made it I would never say no to anything and take life like they took Normandy.

A couple of years later I got into a drug and alcohol problem. I had a fuckin' great time! Coke, booze and pot. Then I lost my dreams. I looked for myself and found no one. Toby stood by me. She pretended to allow me to find my own way out while getting me to chase my dreams again.

Zelda. My second girl. Third if you include Toby.

When I was about 13 I said I wanted to be surrounded by chicks. I got what I asked for to perfection.

Now we live in Topanga Canyon in California. I'm painting non-stop again.