MILWAUKEE, WI – Var Gallery will feature the artwork of Jason Van Roo at its first exhibition of 2022 called “Deep Time.” Rooted in a relationship with the natural world, Van Roo’s work invites the viewer to let themselves get lost in the deeply rendered layers of acrylic and pastel, which lean into the grain of the wood as though the image of the forest could have emerged from the tree itself.
The public is invited to meet the artist at the exhibit’s opening reception on Friday, January 21 from 5-8 p.m. in Var Gallery’s Between Two Galleries space at 423 W. Pierce Street #1704, Milwaukee, WI. Admission to the gallery is free.
Stemming from time spent in the forest as a child and subsequently, throughout his life, Van Roo’s practice is an exploration of his relationship to the natural world as a grounding and energizing force. Drawing from both the material and impalpable aspects of wilderness, he works in the vocabulary of found or salvaged wood along with the passage of time, light, and reflection. His use of color and mark-making are not in the pursuit of imitation; rather, they are an effort to arrive at a hidden truth, and intersection of the tangible and intangible.
The resulting paintings are not only documents of “deep time” spent in nature, they also engage with the malleable and organic nature of time itself. This collapsing of the differentiation between material, process, and subject matter subverts the objectivity of time and the arbitrary distinction of what is bound to humanity and what is bound to nature.
About the Artist
Jason Van Roo is an artist and educator who takes inspiration from his experience with the Wisconsin landscape and responds through traditional, contemporary, and intuitive methods on found or salvaged wood. His work reflects a balance between the observable and the unobservable, the knowable and the unknowable, with reverence for new understandings through subject matter and material. His paintings have been featured at Var Gallery, Gallery 1308 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Union South, the Fiskum Gallery at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and the Sharon Lynn Wilson Center for the Arts.
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