Jamaal Peterman

Region: MFA Annual

Through color, symbols, geometry, and spaces, Jamaal Peterman questions access in relation to young Black males and other bodies. His paintings and installations highlight the separation of classes reinforced by commodities and wealth. Exploring the proximity of Black bodies throughout Western history, he deconstructs and neutralizes the misrepresentation created by stereotype. This is a reference to harmful stigmas placed on the lives that are affected by urban environments. The paintings visually break down the layers of code and conduct governing the mental state of African Americans living in cities. The flatly painted synthesized shapes form an abstract space that shapes the landscape literally and metaphorically.

Using techniques influenced by postwar geometric artists, Peterman breaks down elements of social hierarchy within these synthetic spaces. He allows the viewer to simply look at forms that govern the space and the identity that shapes the composition. He uses a geometric style to convey “ absolute reality” and color as a way to access the space designated for certain social classes.