12.04.16 by Staff

“Twenty Sixteen” by Artist Erik Jones


New work by one of our favourites, Brooklyn-based artist Erik Jones (click here for previous posts). His solo show is currently on display at Jonathan LeVine Gallery and runs until April 30th. See more images from “Twenty Sixteen” below!





































Erik Jones’ Website

Erik Jones on Instagram

Erik Jones on Facebook

Erik Jones on Tumblr

Jonathan LeVine Gallery

If you have work to share, please send us a tweet or post it to our monthly submission posts.

  • Benjamin Anderson

    he really freed himself up and explored new ideas and themes in these pieces. I love seeing that in an artist!

  • xJp1989

    You are right, you should be sorry!
    These paintings hold much more meaning than your rant which is very unoriginal!

    • Pyramid of Control

      Why are you hurt, please explain why the gratuitous use of nudity? I’m no puritan, but I do feel as though the use of nudity for curb-appeal is exploitative—it leaves the pieces tainted with a commercial media vibe—show some titty to draw people into the theater or some school shootings to get them to flip the news on.

      There is a practical reality in this time-period—people are drawn to taboo, just look at the media and it’s sensationalization of violence or sex. People are attracted for salacious reasons. To create something professional and to submit it to the world stage in a public venue without the having the price-tag of intelligent thought attached, I’d argue it isn’t morally-sustainable art.

      I feel there now exists more than ever, a responsibility to keep art separate from the distortions of mainstream media. As an artist, and as a sustainable human being, there should be an imperative to embrace and capture the passions of life, not the demands of the pop-market. I don’t feel anything real when I see the reflection of our amoral economy in a piece of work—I see lost passions, undermined by dollar values and it hurts. I rant because I’d like to see art appreciated in terms of how wholly it filled the heart, not the pocket.

      Don’t just say I’m unoriginal, explain why this art is original and prove that it isn’t just pretentious color splats… I think it’s unfair that this type of work makes it up on a blog like this when there’s so many others out there that have a tangible message behind their work and should be exalted for the change they can elicit through that intelligent artistry.

      In a utopia, I could accept color splats and crotch shots, but in real life our culture is rotting, pulled down with the ball and chain of entertainment driven consumerism—everything is held to the light and seen only as a value of the dollars it can generate, not a valid measure of worth if you ask me. I’d seek to reward those first, that produce a genuine insight into the human condition. Not a debasement of intelligent artistry in exchange for their name in lights.

      Art should be valued as a transducer of ideas, not a generator of cash and fame. We should use it responsibly, as a tool of enlightenment to combat the oppression of thought and knowledge. Submitting to the machine of money, without an accessible path to intelligent meaning is irresponsible, and just makes you another media producer—not an artist of the truest kind.

      • xJp1989

        I’m not hurt.
        The artist took his time to make something, he crafted a painting.
        You on the other hand took your time to make something else… a comment.
        The artist used his materials to construct paintings that exist physically. He created something which you might not understand, but which many others do… enough to spend their money on regardless of whether you think it “morally-sustainable art” or not.
        (IMO morally sustainable art does exist… it is called religion)
        Your comment is unoriginal because for each of the “thousand” paintings that have been made by “a thousand people” (or so you say) there are a thousand comments like yours that try to shrink art into tight moral standards of what should and should not be.
        Think of a kid drawing a rainbow. Why would you try to weigh your moral righteousness upon his creation?
        I get it… you don’t like nudes, or colorful paintings. You want art to have a political message. Maybe you need someone else to be a beacon of light and guide you through these dark times you live in where what is good is tangled with what is bad and it is very difficult to discern which path to take.
        There is art like that as well, and bucket loads as well. For me art is much more about plurality, about the beauty of human expression in all its forms, and my attitude towards artist is to encourage them and find what is beautiful in their creation.
        Your comment is full of hate and sadness. You call the dedication and work of a person “pathetic”. In my view, you are a little more pathetic, a little more confused.
        This is why I think you should be sorry.

  • xJp1989

    Too long…

  • xJp1989

    I do like to discuss, but I do it with smart people.

    You strike me as a frustrated fat guy who gets disturbed by boobs. Is this the “truth” you speak of?

    I took my time to answer once. I stand by that. And… I’m not Catholic.

  • Pyramid of Control

    Yeah, you would be correct. I was a bit harsh on the initial comment, and like others in the world, I am a fallible human being—just me being frustrated with the unthinkingness of the world and lashing out. Been

    I appreciate our huge conversation in a way I didn’t think I would, sorry if I was untactfully hostile at points—I don’t want to be mean, still working on obtaining those “better words.”

    Thanks for arguing with me to a point of understanding. It’s the debates turned conversation like this one that end up advancing the cogency of my concerns.

    Live long and prosper my friend.

    • xJp1989

      What art do you like?

      I still think your view is very moral, which I do not oppose. I dig religious art, “the virgin in the rocks”, sculptures of Avalokiteshvara, Angkor Wat, etc.

      At the same time I’m not really into religious institutions and do not follow order blindly.

      What are you arguing? Walmart? I kind of get it… people in power often do shitty things. The same people finance art, almost all of it. Pedophiles financed the Renaissance, you can trace dirty money to most major art works.
      What does that have to do with Erik Jones?

      Should all art be normalized towards being a certain way?

      These questions are not rhetorical. I’ve also enjoyed our discussion.

      I’m not pure, not everything that I enjoy is good. What do you do? Are you retired, unemployed, or a teacher? How do you make time to craft such lengthy responses to a stranger’s comment?

      I think you still beat around the bush, aren’t that concise, and construct arguments around topics that were never in the table to begin with. (Me being religious, American, Wal Mart, children labor)

  • xJp1989

    Simple, laid-back appreciation of the beauty that surrounds us.
    I get what you´re saying though, but not all art has to carry such a heavy burden.

    • Pyramid of Control

      I’m assuming that you’re applying that statement to non-professional artists—I agree with that. There shouldn’t be repressive rules that halt a kid or a hobbyist in developing their expression—it would be damaging to their formation of authentic perspective, since every artist must start at zero and progress in their craft. However, I do believe that the public image of the artist has been inevitably misaligned by capitalistic trajectories.

      The immense progressive value inherent in the communicative ability of the Arts has been harmed by the amoral structure of our Westernized economy. Instead of art blossoming from catharsis, it instead likens itself to the shape of the wallet—influenced more by where the dollar lies than the heart. To be honest, what a wretched waste! to employ this vessel of universal human understanding toward the pursuit of materialism, instead of seeking the synthesis of reality and ideology to solve our glaring problems of selfish divisiveness.

      I can’t lay blame upon anyone truly uninformed, since this problem is realistically a systemic one at its roots, much larger than the singular individual—however I will openly admonish those that stand in the spotlights of fame, celebrating themselves instead of what can be achieved by humanity if we could just talk to one another openly. Art is such a revolutionary medium of expression and communication that those who create to realize cash-flows in this day and age are only adding irresponsibly to the misunderstanding of what could be achieved and inevitably undermining its real social power for change.

      Our discussion has been about this, the public facing message that defines in-general what a professional artist is. We should have a progressive imperative as artists to recenter the craft around the communication of cultural perspective in relation to conditions of life, instead of a pursuit of cash. I’d rather foster new generations that perceive great art as they do great literature, an unlocking of visceral inspiration to motivate human-kind to work progressively for something better than what exists currently, and to expose the problems of selfish accumulation that cause these insufferable inequalities.

      The death of skeptical Post-modernist thought and the philosophy underlying Metamodernism lend to me the greatest optimism for the future trajectories of the Arts.

      • xJp1989

        1. You can buy and praise the art you like. You like very moral art. There is art like that too. You can buy it. You can also make some yourself.
        Other people like Erik’s work and they buy it. I look at it with affection but it’s not my favorite.

        2. My view on things is that most art is not created solely by artist. It is a two way street. Artist create things that will be sold, otherwise they will not thrive. So Art is not the sole expression of the artist, it is the created by groups of people that share a view with a person that is able to materialize it. Curiously you use the word professionally which is something you do to gain a livelihood. I think art that is the most serious transcends that.

        3. It is hard for there to be lots of art in a amoral society. There was more moral art in the Renaissance though. You are old school, which is kinda cool. I like moral people. Now that God is kinda death we are into other stuff.

  • Pyramid of Control

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