I was born in 1953 in an ethnically diverse region of New York-the South Bronx. The neighborhood was somewhat impoverished, and occupied tenements sat among other dwellings either abandoned or torn down. Children in the neighborhood (myself included) played in the rubble and debris of stone and concrete-remnants of apartment buildings that people once called home. It was so common to see drug dealers, junkles and the Italian Mafias that we hardly noticed them at all. Street gangs roamed around like wild animals ready to attack without warnings, as their prey, our level of awareness was heightened to a great degree. During the 17 years I lived in the South Bronx, I had no other frame of reference to my experience. Fear was not a factor of my daily existence, and I was unaware of the degradation, despair and danger of my surroundings. Through my eye everything was beautiful. The sun that cast its light upon those magnificent tenements, and into long foreboding alleyways, reflecting so bright onto the glass of a corner grocery store or fruit stand, and down again onto the concrete sidewalk and black top streets filled me wonder and awe. These childhood experiences formed my artistic vision and continues to provide inspiration for my art. My paintings portray the facades, storefront and streets of New York, gone unnoticed by passersby, brought to life in an array of lights and shadows and atmospheric effects creating a sense of solitude which belies the inner turmoil and strife of an urban existence.