I am a 1986 graduate of painting from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia and Rome. Soon after graduation my focus turned to designing and crafting jewelry with fellow Tyler graduate, Steve Ford. Our work as FordForlano Jewelry is widely collected around the world in museums as well as private collections. Color is a distinguishing feature of the jewelry and is what I think most about.
Composing with color and working in series has always been a big part of my process. While the small paintings are a conscious choice to work on the table within the same space that I have been making jewelry, the larger work is influenced by my environment in New Mexico since 2005. While this work is primarily geometric abstraction, there are elements of New Mexico's enormous sky and bright light, it's monolithic land forms and my memories of Bugs Bunny and Road Runner characters chasing each other around the cartoon western landscape. The geometric forms are developed on a grid system. I used graph paper to map out polyrhythmic patterns over a sheet of paper and by connecting dots in a specific way was able to build an enormous vocabulary of unique hard edge shapes. The grid and these shapes are a jumping off point. The process of improvising over a given structure is something I carry over from my days playing classical Indian percussion (tabla).