My painting explores the psychology of the individual. The characters engage in violent acts, while apathetic bystanders witness the macabre scene. Since childhood, I have faced the struggle between the private drama versus the public persona. My family escaped Poland when I was five years old. We all lived in a single room in Berlin. To blend in at a very prestigious private school, I learned to “put on a mask” and hide the embarrassing reality of my home life. Similar to a film director, I compose narratives to develop an uncanny dramatic scene. I search for my “actors” and my “settings” in vintage photography, in nineteenth- century landscape paintings, and in film stills. Then I invent their story. What attracts me to an image is lurid color temperatures and contrasting lighting scenarios. I intentionally keep facial features and expressions minimal to resist describing an identity. Instead, the actors become archetypes and their physical activity an allegory for a psychopathological world. Each painting is a horrid secret where I can choose to lift the curtain.