Editorial : Recommendations
< Return

Jason Middlebrook
Gallery 16, San Francisco, California
Recommendation by DeWitt Cheng

Jason Middlebrook, "Till I Gain Control," acrylic on wood

Through October 25, 2019


The realms of nature and culture mix very satisfactorily in the work of Jason Middlebrook. The artist lives in the Hudson River valley and employs ingeniously carpentered slabs and strips of local wood — maple, ash, elm, walnut, poplar — for the irregularly shaped ‘canvases’ for his painting. He describes these as “a skin that I lay over the top of nature, somewhat like a sidewalk or a parking lot ... The skin is just visiting. It’s covering but respecting the borders it has been given ... the shapes of trees, the trunks and limbs ...” Layering generally takes the form of hard-edged stripes and rays, à la Frank Stella, but done with humor, as in the psychedelic laminated wood grain in “Look Here.” 


Also appearing is a naturalistic motif, like the stylized plants in “Moondance,” “Till I Gain Control,” and others, which are reminiscent in their evocation of metamorphosis and the secret life of objects associated with early surrealists Giorgio di Chirico and Max Ernst. Whether abstract or representational, the overlays are imaginatively and gracefully integrated with the substrates, metaphorically suggesting the hidden affinities and interdependence between earth and life — pleasurable enough in the viewing, but hardly a revelation.


Also on view are new welded-steel sculptures of clusters of outlined geometric solids, the W.I.L.S.O.N., series, so named for an acrostic poem by the artist: 


We all leave a mark (so what)

Inside and outside

Leaving lines inspired by other lines

Space without us

Occupy space with lines

Never stop making art

Gallery 16

Galleries & Museums
Complete guide to fine art venues of the Western United States
By venue name:
# | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z | ALL
Arizona Nevada New Mexico Texas Utah Colorada Wyoming Idaho Montana Oregon Washington Southern California Northern California Illinois

© 2023 Visual Art Source. All Rights Reserved.

Web Analytics