Born 1966, Jackson, Michigan
Lives and works in Hudson, New York
Wood grain and graphic patterning are the recent focus of Jason Middlebrook’s work. He paints meandering lines and geometric shapes across the smoothed surfaces of wooden planks. His designs mimic or clash with the raw, craggy, and uncut edges of each organically curvaceous board. The work is an exercise in control and restraint. The opaque black and white acrylic paint and the shiny automotive spray cover and determine the design of the wood. At the same time the tree’s natural form is still at the works’ edge, pulling the gaze upward, reminding viewers that each of these objects was once part of a tree whose branches reached up towards the sky. Middlebrook’s body of work is a constant meditation on nature’s power and man’s interaction with it. He pays deft and sensitive attention to the ways we use, abuse, desire, and adore the world around us.
Jason Middlebrook received his BFA from the University of California at Santa Cruz in 1990 and his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1994. His work has been exhibited at: New Museum, New York, NY; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Chicago, IL; Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT; The Contemporary Austin, Austin, TX; Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI; Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA; Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, TX; Palazzo Delle Papesse Centro Arte Contemporanea, Sienna, Italy; Santa Monica Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Monica, CA; Weatherspoon Museum of Art, Greensboro, NC; Wellcome Trust, London, United Kingdom; Museo de Arte de El Salvador, San Salvador, El Salvador; and the Aspen Art Museum, Aspen, CO.