Artist: Jameson Green
Venue: Derek Eller, New York, NY
Exhibition Title: Fiends’ New Moon Ballet
Date: January 7 – February 6, 2021
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of Derek Eller, New York, NY
Man cannot endure his own littleness unless he can translate it into meaningfulness on the largest possible scale.
– Ernest Becker
Derek Eller Gallery is pleased to present Fiends’ New Moon Ballet, Jameson Green’s debut solo exhibition of new paintings. Green’s psychological parables are rendered in a visual language which is steeped in the grandeur of art history, inflected with comics and illustration, and filtered through a highly introspective lens.
The exhibition’s title Fiends’ New Moon Ballet reflects the complexity of ingredients which inform Green’s innate process and dictate his formal and topical choices. “Fiend” evokes a comic book villain; “New Moon” implies the beginning of a cycle; “Ballet” indicates theatricality. As such, we see the cartoonish evil of Guston in Green’s vernacular, the cyclical depictions of life, death, and suffering in the manner of religious Baroque art, and finally, the dark drama of Goya and Picasso captured in his color and composition.
For the works in this exhibition, Green delves deeply into self examination. He frequently inserts portraits of himself at different ages: as a boy witnessing atrocities, as a young man speeding frenziedly in a car, as a man lying in an open casket with bound hands. In My First Enemy and the Last, Green confronts his own mortality and the burden of fear surrounding death. The self portrait, bound and entombed like an Old Master’s Christ, is rendered with equal parts Cubist figuration and stylized cartooning. The show’s monumental centerpiece, entitled A Young Dreamer’s Salute, pictures him as a child gesturing in tribute as unspeakable violence unfolds beside him. The bodies of black men are heaved into a river, their twisted forms evoking at once the spectacle of Guernica and Pietà. By honoring the tragedy, the subject acknowledges that while he may be imbued with this history, it does not ultimately define him.
In some ways, the paintings in this show can function as a key for defining the artist. For Green, the process of painting is an almost spiritual pursuit, enabling him to look to the language of line and gesture used by artists before him to translate, in his own tongue, his sense of “littleness” into “meaningfulness”.
Jameson Green (b.1992) lives and works in Bronx, NY. He has an MFA from CUNY Hunter College (2019) and a BFA from School of Visual Arts (2014). This will be his first solo exhibition at the gallery.