Jessica Demcsak


Contact Information

jessicademcsak@gmail.com

http://www.jessicademcsak.com/

Please contact artist for purchases, commissions, etc.

Painting / Sculpture

The Crane Adjacent

Archived Work

Artist's Statement

Every corner in a house, every angle in a room, every inch of secluded space in which we like to hide, or withdraw into ourselves, is a symbol of solitude for the imagination. –Gaston Bachelard

When experiencing the world, one cannot overlook the structures that surround us and give us shelter. The house itself is our first world. Structures house our dreams, memories, secrets and failures. Each space and corner represents a time in our lives. Aged structures retain a history of the experiences and thoughts of its inhabitants. Memories rub off the insides and outsides of the spaces that exist and become a part of us, whether it is our memories of a similar place or the building’s memories of other inhabitants.

Architecture is like a man made garden with buildings sprouting up instead of flowers, their overcrowding like weeds in our environment. It is a love hate relationship between the necessity of shelter and the taking away of space. I am inspired by its dichotomy of beauty and ugliness, necessary protection and excessive luxury.

When visiting a place, I document my experience with photographs. I photograph curious spaces and ones which have history. I try to pare down the intricate decorative elements and shapes which speak the most of a place. I leave the silhouettes of the new structures and instill them with my own thoughts and memories. The impression that is left acknowledges the experience.

My paintings are object like. They reference wood boxes and protrude off the wall more than a painting on canvas. Because of their small scale, the “boxes” have a precious quality, which is increased by the way they are created. Small objects create a sense of nostalgia, which I feel while I am painting them.

I place the paintings in my lap in close proximity to my body. The layering of memories, in addition to transparent and opaque painted layers, illustrates the wisps of thought that arise when remembering a specific location. Painting in such a devoted way, will hopefully reflect the closeness of the viewer’s gaze. The idea that the viewer will share the same space as I while creating the painting is fascinating. Sharing an experience through an object relates to the idea of memories contained in a space. The process of constructing the “boxes” and then painting them is vital to me.

We live in a world where structures are like weeds overtaking a garden. However, sometimes it is the overlooked weeds that are the most fascinating of all.

Selected Exhibitions

Solo

2008
The Crane Adjacent, The Hall, Inliquid at the Crane Arts Building, Philadelphia, PA

2006
Intimate Spaces, Philadelphia Art Alliance, PA

Jessica Demcsak, Domo Gallery, Summit, NJ

Group

2007
Mini Mania II, The Arts Guild of Rahway, Rahway, NJ

2006
Metro 24, City Without Walls, Newark, NJ

Endings & Beginnings, Rock Paper Scissors Gallery,
Asbury Park, NJ

The Square Foot Show, Art Gotham, New York, NY

City as Nature, Afif Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

2005
Food for Thought, Sumei Multidisciplinary Art Center, Newark, NJ

Urban Life, Esther Klein Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

Local Color, Artspace 129, Montclair, NJ

Window on Broad, Philadelphia, PA

SUMFA 10, Rosenwald-Wolf, Hamilton & Arronson Galleries, Philadelphia, PA
Juror: Robert Storr

Young Art Alliance, Philadelphia Art Alliance, Philadelphia, PA

James Howe Gallery, Kean University, Union, NJ

2004
MFA Thesis Exhibition, The Crane Building & Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

Happy Birthday, Nova Fine Art, Clinton, NJ

2002
WIP Show Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA

International Juried Competition, New Jersey Center for Visual Arts, Summit, NJ

Artist's Bibliography

2006
“Top 30 Under 30 in New Jersey,” New Jersey Monthly, Morristown, NJ

2005
New American Paintings Magazine #57

Awards and Honors

2005
Grant Recipient, Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation

Food For Thought Fellowship, Sumei Multidisciplinary Art Center

Education

2004
University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA
MFA, Painting

2001
Kean University, Union, NJ
MA, Art Education

1999
Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
BFA, Painting