As a surfer and artist who utilizes broken surfboards as his medium (removing old glass, sawing, reconstructing and ultimately refinishing the foam and wood core), Simon transforms deconstructed surfboards into complex, elegant formalities. Art enthusiasts admire Simon’s work for its haltingly complex constructions of foam, wood and resin; surfers revere his process for the ocean life-cycle it represents: death, fragmentation, reassembly and rebirth.
Simon began his career as a graffiti artist (among his graffiti work is a 2001 mural commission along with Gajin Fujita and Alex Kizu for SITE Santa Fe), moved on to painting and, eventually, surfboards. Simon is quick to joke about the circumstances that led to his unconventional choice of media: “I was in graduate school and I was receiving a lot of bad criticism on my paintings...I was in that mind frame where I was searching to break through on something.” A spate of recent interest in Simon’s art tells a very different tale of his artistic success. Jesse Simon’s work was recently shown in the exhibition Fab Ab: New Acrylic Abstraction at the Salt Lake Art Center, and his upcoming show at Patricia Faure Gallery is guaranteed to define a strikingly sophisticated space where serious art and devotional pastime merge.
June 9 - July 14, 2007