press & mission
"Recycled Arts: Jess Graham turns Maps and Scraps into Paper Mosaics," Burlington Free Press October 2012
An excerpt from the article:
"How did this repurposing start? As many things: A confluence of practicality, vision and luck. When I first started the business of Jess Graham Studio, I lived in a singlewide with an attached garage. I had framed-in and insulated part of teh garage to be my studio. It was very little and full of my collections. Folders labeled "birch bark," boxes labeled "googly eyes," and books and books of old maps and scraps that I had collected from garage sales and others' scrap heaps...
"The process of making art from repurposed materials is a dialogue in and of itself. There's a history to the materials— a wearing, a yellowing, another unknown life that adds weight to a piece..."
As a celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Miles Davis' seminal album, Bitches Brew, the Burlington Discover Jazz hosted the show, "Bitches Brew Revisited." A POWERHOUSE of WORLDCLASS musicians (Graham Haynes, Marco Benevento, Vernon Reid, DJ Logic to name a few!) who re-interpret the original album. Where do I fit in? I answered a call to re-imagine the cover art (originally by Mati Klarwein) and WON the contest (I got a couple of tickets to great seats to the show and a cash prize). All in all, a great time! Oh, and a mention of my work in an article on the show in Seven Days!
My thoughts on my experience making the piece: "Bitches Brew conjures for me images both mundane (chickens clucking) and timeless (ancestral sensibilities). I hear subterranean whale lingo and the frenetic catcalls of urban streets. I find that I drift in and out of a reservoir of images-- as if what I hear is Miles Davis accessing a collective memory, pulling out strands of history, archetypes somehow personalized and present."
Stokelab feature July 2010The brainchild of Mike Horn, Backcountry Magazine's Rider in Chief, Stokelab is an online magazine that is designed to, well, get you stoked on all manner of realizing your gnarl-shredding dreams, pushing your limits, or just playing in the outdoors. I'm featured in their most recent issue. Besides just the Jess Graham Studio feature, there are many many pages of pics and thoughtful writing to enjoy. You can also subscribe if you want to get Stokelab dropped directly to your inbox. Enjoy!
On the News, December 2009
My pals at the Burlington City Arts market tipped me off that they had seen me on the evening news. Check it out for yourself! Read or watch.
In the Burlington Free Press, February 2010
What do you know? Found this little article while sipping coffee at the Bee's Knees.
Fall 2009.........My "Pump Track" graces the subscriber card in Dirt Rag bike magazine. Sweet!
...in eastcoast snowboarding October 2008..................................featured artist in east coast snowboarding magazine october 2008
i paint to build a reference for gestures and movements. I reference split second sparks and lifetimes of ruminations. I want my scrawlings & scratchings to coax a little glimmer of a smile, a hope in the mundane, a joy for hot pink, a moment of pause to pick out individual cricket's songs.
i believe in art that makes you happy. Not happy in a saccharine "have a nice day" sense, but the sort of happy that reaches-your-soul-makes-you-love-waking-up-in-the-morning. Because I believe that everybody yearns for art, needs art, sleeps better if they breathe art, I offer my art in a variety of forms. You can get it on a card for your grandma's mantle, an iron-on for your favorite hoodie, a colorlicious oil painting to keep you company in your mountain shack.
painting, making, playing makes me feel peaceful because when I'm making art I'm communicating in energy and color and I'm making a mess and I'm acting on those, "oh what a pretty shiny object, what a crazy lit-from-within crabapple tree" impulses. Sometimes painting feels like singing really loud from my belly. Sometimes making art feels as content and quiet as waking up on a rainy day off with the one I love.
my art probably conveys layers of meaning, but generally I leave that up to you to decipher (you know, like a good story that gives you just enough clues to put the pieces together but not so many that your intelligence is insulted). When it comes to analyzing my art, I prefer not to confuse it with a lot of words. To me, making art is non-verbal, and so in trying to analyze its meaning and purpose I always come to the conclusion that I'm simply lucky to find a peace in the process of making it, and I hope some of that peace and energy and spontaneity and irreverence and downright joy translates to you. I hope you find my art satisfying like the crust of wood-fired bread, fun like dancing, silly like riding bikes in the dark, fluffy like snow.
I hope it helps shake out the dust in your bodymindsoul like good beer and a long hard laugh.
...some older press..............................