At heart I’m a painter with a love of history. I seek to understand my identity through traditional mediums while using contemporary methods. This allows me to express how history relates to current events.
To give an example of this process, I begin with salvaging old frames and transforming them to fit my narrative for each piece. I then make resin molds of the frames. This allows me to manipulate them beyond their traditional function. Frames have traditionally been a portal to the imagery to help convey the illusion of the work. They would go on to become works of art in their own right. Over time frames have lost some of their original functions but have gained new ones. This allows them to be a metaphor for nostalgia. Nostalgia can be a weapon used to preserve a perceived past and continue oppressions. I then break the frame's constraints to expand the imagery beyond the canvas. From there I then use gold leaf as a bridge from the work to the viewer. Gold leaf is traditionally associated with iconography and wealth.
In the work “ego,” I explore my identity defined by white male privilege and the end of its dominance in history. Today we are bookended in history with The Age of Enlightenment. The Age of Enlightenment saw the beginnings of a shift in power from the monarchy and the church to one of reason, science, and the people. We are at a moment in history where power is shifting away from Western White Male Dominance. In the fight for white male dominance to retain its control it is willing to destroy the ideals of democracy we have fought to preserve and founded during the Age of Enlightenment.
Jonathan is a born a raised New Yorker. Drawing early on and throughout his life even during his six year hiatus in the Navy serving aboard Submarines and the first Gulf war. The Navy exposed him not only the world outside of New York but to art history beyond that of his early New York graffiti art scene. Upon completion of his enlistment and his strong work ethic he went on to study fine arts, focusing on painting, drawing and sculpture and a minor in Art History at the University of Missouri. His desire not only to study technique but the history that has influenced western art had been relevant throughout his career. After graduation in 1998 Jonathan became the father of three children. While not one to limit himself to social norms became a stay at home dad to support his wife’s military career and tend to the his first sons special needs. Jonathan’s work kept progressing receiving 2011 best in show at the annual Yellow Barn Glen Echo gallery, portrait commission at Walter Reed Naval Medical Center, gallery representation and having multiple mural commissions. In 2021 he received his MFA at American university and has begun teaching. This has cultivated an artist who brings a depth to his work that is both visually and mentally engaging.