These drawings are echoes of a certain vernacular visual culture of drawn images: cartoons, children’s book illustrations, and the myriad throw-away drawings that we create in our everyday lives whether to work out a problem or out of sheer boredom. They emerge distorted by obsessively pushing them to a level of finish well beyond what is merited, and by removal from their native habitat. Through drawing, I immerse myself in a space or an idea. Different drawing media suggest their own universe, and I make bodies of work that are unified through being made of the same material. I use commonplace, overlooked, and sometimes obsolete media, always with an eye toward evoking a certain tradition or language of drawing, whether it be the old-master qualities of silverpoint or the amateurish clumsiness of ballpoint pen. I revisit memories, and often manifest latent pre-adolescent fantasies. Though the aim may be nostalgia, or beauty, or midwestern values, there lies a sense of unease, an anxiety just beneath the surface. Always, the images are laden with a sense of failure, a pathetic disappointment, accepted with good humor.
Artist Bio / CV
2000 MFA, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Graphics
1997 BFA, West Virginia University, Printmaking
Solo and Two Person Exhibitions:
2011 The Plot Thickens, with Art Guerra, SUGAR, Brooklyn, NY
2007 Silver Points, Alcove, New York, NY
2006 Clear Blue Sky, Richard F. Brush Gallery, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY.
2005 Backyard Premonitions, James Watrous Gallery of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters, Overture Center, Madison, WI.
2004 Minor Disasters, DeRicci Gallery, Edgewood College, Madison, WI.
2001 Paper Work, Class of 1925 Gallery, University of Wisconsin-Madison, WI.
2000 Scott Espeseth: Prints, 7th Floor Gallery, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI.
2012 25 for 25: Silver Anniversary Exhibition, Dean Jensen Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
Bookless, Madison Central Library, Madison, WI
Lineup, Round 2, SUGAR, Brooklyn, NY
2011 Lineup, SUGAR, Brooklyn, NY
2010 Mano/Mundo/Corazón: Artists Interpret La Lotería, Center for Book and Paper Arts, Columbia College, Chicago IL
Here and Now and Then, University of Wisconsin Art Lofts, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
Faculty Exhibition, Wright Museum of Art, Beloit College, Beloit, WI 2009
Big, Big Bangs / Small, Small Bucks II, Dean Jensen Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
A Taste of Sugar, Sugar Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
Contemporary Drawing: 7 Perspectives, Elder Gallery, Nebraska Wesleyan University, Lincoln, NE 2008
Big, Big Bangs / Small, Small Bucks, Dean Jensen Gallery, Milwaukee, WI2007
Art Chicago, with Dean Jensen Gallery, Chicago, IL2006
Likely Stories, Dean Jensen Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
Dean Jensen Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
2009 Smith, Jennifer. Eight to Know: In Praise of Artists You May Have Missed. Isthmus 29 May, 2009: 12.
Williams-Ng, Stacey. Small Wonders. Milwaukee Home and Fine Living Mar. 2009: 14.
2005 Smith, Jennifer, A Game of Inches: Artists Pack Big Ideas Into Small Formats, Isthmus, May 27, 2005, Volume 29, Number 21
Stockinger, Jacob, Try Your Luck at Watrous, The Wisconsin State Journal, May 12, 2005
2004 Auer, James, Toying With Qualms, Paranoia, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, November 16, 2004