Color Jam

Jessica Stockholder examines intentionality and serendipity in this diverse portfolio.

For the last four decades, artist Jessica Stockholder has been testing the boundaries of art through the materials she uses. Stockholder made a name for herself in the 90s through installations that tested the limits of their environments. In her work, the focus goes beyond the frame, moving into unexpected realms. A tower of plastic tubs climbs to the ceiling; tangled street lights overwhelm a pole; and a scissor lift becomes a part of the work.

In this portfolio, Stockholder examines what she refers to as “the relationship between intentional letter making and the more unintentional expressive mark.” The sculptor, who has three pieces in the Hauser Wirth & Schimmel exhibition, also thought about masks—particularly cars and the “mask-like quality to them,” as well as mask used by the First Nations people, Aboriginal Canadians, on the Northwest Coast. The final drawing with words is a response to the car illustration and an image of sculpture from a recent exhibition at Kavi Gupta Gallery in Chicago.

Stockholder says, “I use material because it exists, and I make my work in relationship to what exists, and then how what exists is meaningful is a shifting thing, depending on how it’s addressed and how it’s used.”

Jessica Stockholder’s public art installation, Color Jam Houston, was on view at the intersection of Main Street and McKinney, downtown Houston, Texas through March 2017.

This portfolio first appeared in Document’s Spring/Summer 2016 issue.