Grand Rapids First Friday June 2017
Each month the Grand Rapids location hosts a featured artist to show their art for the Avenue Of The Arts’ First Friday event. We are extremely happy to be a part of the local art community and to be able to show off some glass art while experiencing many different forms for ourselves. The Avenue of the Arts has been running the First Friday program as a way to bring the community together and to show off the amazing talent on Division Ave in Grand Rapids. The gallery hop runs from 6 to 9 on the first Friday of every month but the artist keeps their art on the wall for the rest of the month to help get some recognition from the local community. The featured artist for June was Jack Moga.
I am a practicing artist and past museum art curator. I am married to a bead weaver, Yehudit Newman, and we have two adult sons. Originally from Detroit, I hold a BFA from the University of Michigan and an MFA from the University of Windsor. Other interests include theater, both on stage and off, where I apply my talent as actor, set designer, set dresser, and scenic painter for professional and community theater as well as film.
Artist Statement: Wassily Kandinsky had said, “we are still firmly bound to the outward appearance of nature and must draw forms from it.” I have made a study of his work and artists of kind – captivated by the use of animated brushstrokes, brilliant color, and nonobjective imagery.
My imagery consists of the lyric elements of line and the illusory sense of space through clouded form and colors. The line is animate, changing width and length, mingling with little objects marking the drawing surface in a diversity of forms and the color attracts, becoming both introduction and common ground between the viewer and myself. The child-like pastels and colors contrast their innocence and energy with the threatening colors of the ground. I add to this chaotic maelstrom the stability of hard-edged shapes, not to suggest subject, rather to give the work a sense of order and establish a physical presence within the picture plane.
The undulating color suggests various spatial depths traversed by a network of vibrantly hued surreal forms and agitated lines. The application of color and form operates on an automatic level. I apply a color, shape, or line and react and respond in kind. Within this chaotic period of the work’s development, I consider aspects of composition and color. For the piece to operate beyond the visual, I title them with names suggestive of the impression the work evokes. These titles are themselves cryptic and vague, lending another ambiguous aspect.
Many of the early surrealists explored subjective realities as a doorway into the mercurial realm of the meta-physical. Again, to quote Kandinsky, “creation of a work is creation of a world,” in such a fashion, I present a small world onto itself, described by the universal language of the abstract.