Alumni Troupe/Fellow, Visiting Artist

Jesse Kreuzer

As a boy, I told my mother that an adventure is when you are almost bitten by a wolf. In my work, my playfulness is given substance through risk. Balance and weight are constant themes. The pull of the earth, the vibrations between images, the space between objects and the emotional forces of current events are all opportunities for adventure and exploration.
I grew up with an obsessive-compulsiveness for "body equilibrium" (right arm gets bumped => left arm is bumped to equal it) that is now manifest in my art practice as a desire for balance that is different than symmetry, but still compulsive. My drawings are struggles to find a compositional balance. My performances are physical searches and demonstrations of it. My sculptures use balance as structural imperatives. Balance is required both to dance gracefully and to thrash wildly...
I try to understand why I want to make things through the process of making them. Drawings become structures, structures become symbols and personal narratives emerge. Each structural event adds meaning- The weight breaks through a cage; the weight floats above the ground; the weight is dragged through a city. In performances I move through buildings without touching the ground and create intimacy between myself and a space- I know details of hallways, doors, the tops of walls because I have measured them with my body. 
My body is the point of reference for my drawings. Visual style is manipulated like materials, like stone and wood, leveraged against each other and built into compositions around bodily forms. The format of facing pages in my sketchbooks- the series of diptychs- emphasizes this diversity of stylistic material. Different positions are taken, tried out, obfuscated. When I draw I open myself up to all possible images- I'm riffing and mixing from memory, magazines, porn, from art history and how-to-put-your-cabinet-together manuals, the round stretch and itch of cartoons and the incidental still-life of crumpled paper in front of me to make kaleidoscopic mash-ups of crudeness and grace. 
Like someone falling down the side of a mountain, grabbing at vines, I'm trying to show something anxiously candid. Keeping between the dual electric-fence of too cheesy and too hip, I veto anything dishonest. The path through my books is linear even when it folds back on itself, like the route through a labyrinth, or the drawing a rock makes through a city, or the path across walls and above the floor. I let the lines lead me like the architecture leads me like the materials and their physical limitations lead me: to honest places.

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