Jill Slosburg-Ackerman

Region: Northeast

I am interested in the conjunction “and”. Just as conjunctions join separate linguistic elements within a single sentence, my artwork joins disparate and often opposing concepts and forms. My sculpture and drawings investigate the contrast of nature and artifice, the relationship of handmade things to manufactured products and the tension between sculpture and design.

I began to draw seriously as a counterpoint to the arduous process of making sculpture. Without structural demands, I can easily be speculative and spontaneous. I draw as a sculptor, engaged in particular by issues of material, figure-ground relationships, and framing which are reflected by the constructed wood elements in each drawing. The recent “Framing Drawings” are hybrid works that collapse the boundary between a drawing and its frame through interacting carved and painted passages. In contrast to the gravity of sculpture, my drawings can be buoyant and emotional. The recent “Iraq Drawings” juxtapose fragments of ivory, a precious, forbidden material, with voluptuous painted and drawn forms, embodying my distress over the war.

Despite the highly crafted and finished quality of my drawings, they are for me “working drawings”, palpable ways to explore form and relationships on paper.