Emphasizing seductive surfaces, nontraditional materials, and the use of luminescent colors to catalyze inspection of the mechanics of perception, Jimi Gleason stands among today’s most important practitioners of West Coast Minimalism. The artist’s profoundly meditative paintings instill contemporary abstraction with references to the dramatic glimmer of Cibachrome photography as well as the beautifully distorted edges of Polaroid film by means of a layering procedure that derives from printmaking techniques. Dragging iridescent acrylic pigments along tautly-stretched canvases, he surrounds radiant planes of color with peripheries whose folds and runnels ground the work’s vaporous atmospherics in the here and now of direct physical experience. Highly reactive to transient light effects and modifications in viewing position, the resulting paintings invite spectatorial involvement to suggest the infinitely broad experiential possibilities of art.
Born in Newport Beach, California, Gleason received his BA from UC Berkeley in 1985. He then studied printmaking at the San Francisco Art Institute before relocating to New York City, where he worked as a photo assistant and photo technician. Returning to California, Gleason was employed in the studio of Ed Moses for nearly seven years. Synergizing the disparate technical and compositional principles developed during his exposure to printmaking, photography, and mixed media painting, Gleason is now the subject of considerable curatorial and critical applause. Exhibited in significant public institutions including the Armand Hammer Museum, the Long Beach Museum of Art, and the Seattle Art Museum, the artist’s works are actively collected by a growing number of major public and private collections internationally.