The Jackson Junge Gallery presents, INSANITY a special group exhibition opening on Friday, September 29, 2017 with an artist reception from 6-10pm. Admission is FREE to the public.
Insanity has many different definitions. For some, it is depicting mental illness. For others, it could be a euphoric reaction or even an expression of a current political situation. To Einstein, Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. No matter the definition, to be insane is different for every human.
INSANITY is a collection of artworks that depict the senselessness we experience in our world today. Jackson Junge Gallery has curated 34 works from Chicago based artists, that explore different definitions and aspects of absurdity. Artist were asked to submit artwork that is an expression of their experience within this theme. Creative minds have clever ways of transforming human emotion into visual expression. Also, in times of strive and discomfort, the most influential art is created to bring awareness. In the eyes of many, our world is at a tipping point, and, some believe, turning the most rational people to insane. This exhibition is an interpretation of how our society is shifting.
Laura Lee Junge – “Gilbert Herman the 2nd, King of Insanity”
“Gilbert Herman the 2nd, King of Insanity” is inspired by Laura’s father, Gilbert, who lost his sanity in the later years of his life. After moving his family from their home in Minneapolis to the Bible belt in Oklahoma, Junge’s family started to realize the subtle traits of mental illness. This painting depicts his progression. Junge states, “The faces coming out of the background are the voices inside his head. He was a schizophrenic. His heart, which my mom always had a part of, is depicted as an apple, her favorite fruit.” Junge was only a resent graduate of the School of the Art Institute when this painting was created. She was still in the process of developing her style. Instead of letting the history of her father consume her, she embraced the surrealist part of her father’s mind and captured it in this painting. Since then, Junge has continued her exploration of contemporary surrealism.
Lorca Jolene – “Siren”
For Jolene, collaging is art therapy. Jolene compares her work to a jigsaw puzzle and takes comfort in the knowledge that she does not know what the final image will be. This series of collages explores two themes that have defined her experiences as a mentally ill person, she says, “The first is liminality - the quality of ambivalence that occurs in a state of mind where stable boundaries between dream and reality, delusion and deduction, within and without are de-familiarized. My collage characters' bodies are suspended between a myriad of materials and forms - between flesh and tech, male and female, human and animal - and each one is deeply influenced by my own experiences of claiming and communicating ambiguous spaces in the context of gender, sanity, affect, and body image. The second is amalgamation. Psychotic symptoms have the effect of fusing and synthesizing senses and thoughts into perceptions of self, body, and world that do not adhere to conventional notions of logic, consistency, and congruity.”
Richard Laurent – “Potus”
“Potus” is derived from an ongoing project Laurent has been working on since March of 2016. He says, “It is a chronicle in political cartoon form of Donald Trump's rise to the Presidency. I think this 'gesture' is self-explanatory.” Inanity in this instance is knowing that the President of the United States is a man who has no idea what being a president entails.
Jeff Sadowski – “Revenge of the Face Food”
The maddening circumstances in this painting is absurd. You would think that the main focus of this painting is that food has come to life to kill someone and that would be insane enough. Originally the artist’s thought was," Why do we put cute happy faces on food to promote the consumption of that said food? Irrational maybe, but I would like to put this piece in the ‘Mental Illness’ category.” Sadowski put the newspaper in the painting from the day that John Hinckley Jr. tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan. John Hinckley Jr. has been considered as mentally ill and is an accurate representation of a cracked egg, and, in turn, conveys the frailty of the human mind.
INSANITY runs September 29th – October 29th and is curated by Gallery Director Chris Jackson, Laura Junge, and Assistant Gallery Director Kaitlyn Miller.