Birth of the World
Sculpture and paintings by Jeff Maron.
Curated by James Cavello
New York, NY -Westwood Gallery presented an exhibition of sculpture, copper alloy paintings and drawings by the artist Jeffrey Maron.
Maron creates art to remind people of their spiritual existence and to express very directly his affinity for "primitive," animistic art with its unfiltered directness and expressiveness. While formal experimentation has been a very important and fruitful step for modern art, in time such formalism has ignored important issues that need to be reevaluated. Among them is the necessity for reestablishing harmony. In Jeffrey Maron's vision, art is, beyond anything else, the activity of projecting spirit into form. He utilizes basic shapes, simple, tense and effective, that are transcendently tied with primordial forces and have a ritualistic strength. Circles, arcs and spirals combine in a free and daring manner both in sculptures and in paintings; they are not only basic geometric forms, but symbols of the celebration of spiritual consciousness, having the property of unifying and ordering surrounding forces and phenomena. Their celestial syntax articulates a coherent conception, far from the technological myth and closer to the magical roots of animism. The underlying idea is a global visual consciousness that we all share; this consciousness is expressed in art and our need to tap into it. The artist has to regain what is spiritual, magical and mysterious in order to restore the primordial rhythm; this process of creation is as important as the end result, which is all encompassing. The reinforcement of the seed-form is important, as well as the spiral, as symbols of this very process.
Jeffrey Maron uses the processes of etching and oxidation. Oxides are grown on the surface in multi layers, giving a lush deep coloration, which is literally alive. Color is obtained not with pigments and oils but rather with crystalline oxides: strong salts are vaporized on the surface forcing the growth of crystalline structures that chemically bond with the copper. Maron is instantly forcing the growth with heat. Few sculptors have obtained such subtle patinas and chromatic variations from welded and oxidized metal. The creative process is very important to the artist; he displays technical excellence in forming, shaping and joining the metal, in addition to creating subtle tones and deep variations of color.
About the Artist
Jeffrey Maron lives and works in New York City. After receiving a Bachelor of Science in Sociology and a Masters of Fine Art from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri in 1973, Jeffrey went on to receive numerous awards. These included a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award, R.S. Reynolds Memorial Award, National Endowment for the Arts Grants and a Fulbright-Hayes Grant, which enabled him to study sculpture in Japan. He worked in the Far East for two years, absorbing and incorporating Japanese philosophy, habits and customs. Since that time, his discontent with contemporary models of sculpture led him to investigate form and symbolism in various cultural and historical environments. Besides Japan, he has explored other cultures as well; as a result, his inspiration merges shamanistic and American Indian allusions, as well as esoteric aspects of Buddhism and Judaism.