Mud Made Monsters
Jameson Green (b.1992) slashes the delusive reality bubble with a frenzy of unbashful and immediate brush strokes. Motivated by the conviction that the awareness of life’s downsides has a humbling, grounding effect, he is merely giving the sense of direction to the viewer as the steering wheel of contemplation gets handed over. Using the cartoonish goofiness to help digest the intense narratives and consider the aforementioned proposals, the Bronx-based artist is juxtapositioning grotesque and sublime while removing the raw violence from the sphere of simpleness and banality.
Familiar with anger, fear, violence, and a tendency toward self-destructive behavior, Green is using self-referencing and self-examination to navigate the historic events. Brutally honest about his own wrongdoings and accepting the fear/anger-driven actions as part of his character, he is a firm believer that a well-rounded personality needs to be anchored by the acceptance of this duality. A duality that conditions the importance of knowing how dangerous one can be before treating themselves or anyone else with care. Taking into consideration the fact that the time, place, and circumstances will shape an individual into a product of their environment, the Mud Made Monsters are beautiful in their ugliness as much as they’re ugly in their beauty. Invested in devising a coherent and comprehensive language that would both deliver thought-provoking ideas and provide the viewer with an almost bodily emotional experience, Green is fusing cartooning with the history and material of painting. This setup allows for greater nuance in the figurative manipulation, away from the traditional academic approach, which ironically, makes the work that much more relevant in the same context. Employing the ability of the linework-based visuals to reach the soul in a direct line, the works are allowing for the illustrative elements to throw their grappling hooks onto their attention only to bring the painterly elements to the forefront to engage.
Once there, the vibrancy and the seductive, tactile appearance of paint are considered, with the robustness and the purity of color becoming the key elements of the practice. And Mud-Made Monsters marks the closest the artist has been to the blending of the two. Having drawing and painting together in his holster empowers for a quicker, immediate, and seemingly effortless mark-making that coexists with the ability to move thick layers of paint and have the pictorial elements just glide on the surface. Alongside cartoonishly bright, primary colors that are dominating the palette with their punchiness, the earth tones pull the visuals back into the realm of corporeality. This convincing corporeality is occasionally broken with the appearance of black and white characters, through which the passage of time is brought into the equation, expanding the narrative beyond the apparent scene. Such complex, theatrical compositions are laid out to drive a more potent narrative in which different visual languages would tackle different aspects of the storyline and convey a different range of moods and notions. Blending the storytelling of the comic book with Cubism and/or Post Impressionism aesthetics, the cynicism of German expressionism with
the drama of Baroque, and the religious symbolism with the general wrongness of minstrel cartoons, Green is conveying downright impossible scenarios while providing just enough sense of how such maddening experiences would've felt like.
- Saša Bogojev