Mixed media painter/print maker, Jesse Hazel, explores themes of duality and wholeness between cultures, society, and politics. His work threads moments of personal self reflection meant for meditation with moments of confrontation meant to provoke audience's assumptions and relationships to art.
Influenced by Daoism and Buddhism, Hazel says, "My own ethos compels a mistrust of work that relies on virtuosity or transcendental knowledge. I appreciate the sensation of struggle where the artist attempts to discover something new through each step of the process. I celebrate mistakes and want work that reflects not only my skills but my personality at the current moment of creation and self-realization."
Hazel observes how cultural upbringings may seem to create differences between Western and Eastern cultures, however, when you look deeper, groups share similar dreams, influences, and aspirations. Hazel's subjects appear transfixed in time and space floating among abstract fragmented environments or the bare raw canvas to represent ideas of the Void. Hazel also demands a certain level of accountability for social and political atrocities in recent years through the work. The work strives to communicate with people at an accessible and meaningful level rather than repeat familiar escapism or popular practices. Ultimately Hazel's work is about being and what it means to be a part of this world.
Jesse Hazel recently completed an MFA in 2D Studies at Bowling Green State University. He has a BFA in Studio Arts: Painting, BA in printmaking, and an additional major in Asian Religions and Culture from Western Kentucky University.