2016, oil on linen, (22″ x 16″)
All of my recent works have dealt with human sense and perception. As George Berkeley tells us, we have no direct access to the external world. Only through the window of our senses do we acquire data through which to build an internal model that we use to mediate our position in “the real out there.” This holds true not only to the immediate external world, but to the world presented to us through the artifacts of Art History.
By choosing to use a representational language, I am constantly presenting my ideas through an anachronistic visual language, a language which at one point was the epitome of visual high technology. Now, however, oil paint is merely one of a number of aesthetic “traditional” modes of picture making that are fundamentally removed from the cultural, philosophical and political context that gave birth to them. As a researcher, I can study the life of the historical painting, I can know the wars, the patrons, and the lovers that surrounded them, but I can never really have any more of a “direct access” to what drove their practice than they could to the underlying motivations of the neolithic artists.
The prone figure in the painting “Entopicon 3” is a quotation from Jusepe de Ribera’s “Martyrdom of Saint Andrew.” A charged Tenebrist image to be sure, but one that directly connects to Berkeley’s idea of “The Relativity of Perceptions,” the idea that the “same” object may appear to be the source of different incompatible sensations. A loaded Christian image to some, a tragic humanistic narrative to others, and an outdated modality of art to yet more. Cradling an invisible form, the standing figure contemplates the gulf between Ribera’s intentions and the act of viewing the painting in the 21st century. What would it be like to experience a historical art work without the filters of 500 years of red-shifting context? The Entopicon paintings engage that very space where the Relativity of Perceptions collide to construct a new model of reality.
Born in Santa Monica, California, in 1974, Jean-Pierre Roy is a Brooklyn-based painter and teacher. Roy received his MFA from the New York Academy of Art in 2002 and was awarded the school’s 3rd year fellowship upon graduation. Since 2003, Roy has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the US and Europe and has had solo museum exhibitions at the Torrence Art Museum in Los Angeles and the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art in Virginia Beach. Roy is currently represented by Gallery Poulsen, DK. His work has been reviewed in The New York Times, ArtNews, Art in America, New American Painters, The Chicago Tribune, The Huffington Post, The Seattle Stranger, Hi- Fructose, and Juxtapoz amongst others. He is the co-creator of Single Fare, an annual NYC art event that had been covered by the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. His work is in collections of Anita Zabludowicz, Jereann Cheney, Beth Rudin DeWoody, Jean Pigozzi, Leonardo DiCaprio and Bjorn Borg amongst others. He currently teaches painting at the New York Academy of Art.