Brett Amory was born in 1975 in Chesapeake, Virginia. He lived in San Francisco for 15 years before relocating to Oakland in 2009 where he is currently based. His work has been shown in Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, New York, and San Jose and continues to receive acclaim.
I began the Waiting series in 2001 with paintings based on photographs I have taken of ordinary city architecture and random people whom I saw daily, but never spoke to. I feel especially drawn to individuals who look lost, lonely, or awkward—those who don’t appear to fit into local societal norms. As the title suggests, the Waiting series illustrates how people are distracted by a constant internal dialogue, preoccupation with memories of the past and/or concern for the future, and are often unable to live in the present moment. My work attempts to visually represent this concept of disconnection, detachment, and anticipation, conveying the idea of transient temporality that exists in the moments of our daily lives.At first, the series, depicted travelers waiting underground. But as the paintings evolved, the people ceased to be exclusively travelers, and began to emphasize figures selected from anonymous snapshots of city streets and local landmarks. Although the experience of waiting remains, the perception of it has changed from one of mundane task to one leavened with transcendence.The series has also charted the evolution of myself as an artist – the reductive elements of the compositions provide an outward echo of the inner states of the figures. And by slowly reducing the elements of the painting as far as possible, a frozen moment is extended.More recently, I have developed favored motifs in the series – a kind of visual music, such as repetition of a human image – to show not only the passage of time but of the human being through it.