Miles McEnery Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent works by Jason Middlebrook. The artist’s second exhibition with the gallery, “Light Lines,” opens on 9 June and will remain on view through 23 July 2022. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated digital catalogue featuring an essay by Peter Heller.
Colorful artifice embraces natural wonder in Middlebrook’s sculptures that explore man’s relationship with nature. Using three-dimensional wooden constructions, the artist challenges viewers to think below the surface and invites them to reflect on nature as a work of art — calling attention to how above any human activity, the natural world continues to prevail.
Middlebrook describes his process stating, “For the last decade or so, I’ve been working with a mill in Western Massachusetts where I source all the wood for these designs. The shapes are the basis for a series of landscape paintings which focus on the organic and the geometric pushing and pulling against each other. As I gaze out my window, I’m inspired by where the sky meets the trees and how the trees interact with the landscape. All of these works are inspired by this interaction. These wall works have evolved from my plank series and are now using multiple types of wood to make up the composition.”
To create his lively and inventive forms, Middlebrook first meticulously studies the shape of the wood and lets it guide his next steps. Using the smooth side of the surface, he paints the wood while taping off the margins of the patterns that in some cases completely cover the surface, and in others operate more as a net or a screen. This process allows the imperfect qualities of the wood to show through from the background, reminding viewers of the fundamental properties of the material itself. Through this process, Middlebrook creates an exquisite juxtaposition between the artificial geometric patterns of the painting and the natural patterns of the grain.
Jason Middlebrook (b. 1966, Jackson, MI) received his Master of Fine Arts from the San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA and his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of California at Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA. He completed an Independent Study Program at The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY.
Recent solo exhibitions include “Light Lines,” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; Galleria Gianpaolo Abbondio, Piazza Giuseppe Garibaldi 7, Todi, Italy (forthcoming); “Skies,” David Smith Gallery, Denver, CO; “Another World,” Moss Arts Center, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blackburg,VA; Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; Gallery 16, San Francisco, CA; LaMontagne Gallery, Boston, MA; Jeff Bailey Gallery, Hudson, NY;“The Last Tree on the Planet,” Lora Reynolds Gallery,Austin,TX;“My Grain,” Galleria Pack, Milan, Italy; “Drawing Time,” David B. Smith Gallery, Denver, CO; “Time Compression Keeps Me Coming Back for More,” Lora Reynolds Gallery, Austin, TX; “The Small Spaces in Between,” Gallery 16, San Francisco, CA; “Nature Builds/We Cover,” Thomas Cole National Historic Site, Catskill, NY; “Your General Store,” New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM; “Gold Rush,” Peters Projects, Santa Fe, NM; “Jason Middlebrook: Mosaic Tree Stumps,” Jeff Bailey Gallery, Hudson, NY; and Morgan Lehman Gallery, New York, NY.
Recent group exhibitions include “Arboreal,” Moss Arts Center, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA; “Belief in Giants,” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; “Nuevas Adquisiciones: UAG Permanent Collection 2015-2017,” New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM; “Wood as Muse” (curated by Donna Dodson and Andy Moerlein), The Art Complex Museum, Duxbury, MA; “Maker, Maker” (curated by Paul Laster and Renée Riccardo), Children’s Museum of the Arts, New York, NY; “Taconic North” (curated by Susan Jennings and Julie Torres), LABspace, Hillsdale, NY; “Cortesie per gli ospiti,” Galleria Pack, Milan, Italy; “Casa Futura Pietra,” Parco Archeologico di Siponto, Siponto, Italy; “Relevant Notes,” Cara Gallery, New York, NY; “Geomagic: Art, Science, and the Zuhl Collection,” New Mexico State University Art Gallery, Las Cruces, NM; “Contexture,” Jane Lombard Gallery, New York, NY; “Craters of the Moon, A Project of The Sun Valley Center for theArts,” Sun Valley Center for theArts, Ketchum, ID; “Beg, Steal, or Borrow: It’s Nature that Takes the Blame,” von Auersperg Gallery, Deerfield Academy, Deerfield, MA; “Painting @ The Very Edge of Art,” Contemporary Art Galleries, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT; and “The Big Show 9,” Peters Projects, Santa Fe, NM.
His work is included in the collections of Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Altoids Collection, New York, NY; Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO; Harn Museum, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; Marte Museum, San Salvador, El Salvador; Microsoft Corporate Art Collection, Redmond,WA; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; NASA Art Program, Washington, D.C.; New Museum, New York, NY; Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH; US Embassy, Podgorica, Montenegro, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY.
Middlebrook lives and works in Hudson, NY.