RECENT WORK by Jeff Whipple

"Seizing the Day", oil on canvas, 40" x 60", 2008

"History", watercolor on paper, 30" x 22", 2009

"Circumstance", oil on canvas, 16" x 18", 2008

"Tide", oil on canvas, 48" x 60", 2008

"Ambition", watercolor on paper, 30" x 22", 2008

"Historian", oil on canvas, 50" x 40", 2007

"Legacy", oil on canvas, 40" x 50", 2007

"Patron", oil on panel, 36" x 24", 2007

"The Consequences of Being", oil on canvas, 30" x 48", 2007

"Savior", oil on canvas, 70" x 70", 2007

"Exile", oil on canvas, 18" x 24", 2007

"The Mover and Shaker", oil on canvas, 70" x 70", 2007

"Portrait of the Artist in Spasms", oil on canvas, 18" x 24", 2007

"The Patron is Delighted by What She Sees", oil on canvas, 60" x 48", 2007

"Spasm Field #12", oil on canvas, 70" x 70", 2007

"The Perpetual Spasm", oil on canvas, 30" x 60", 2007

"Fabric", oil on canvas, 70" x 70", 2007

"Reaching", pencil on paper, 17" x 14", 2009

"Contemplation", pencil on paper, 17" x 14", 2009

"Spasm Head", photograph mounted on shaped wooden panel, 27" x 27" x 2", ed: 25, 2009

"Resolve", pencil on paper, 28" x 22", 2009

The above two images are stills from "The Ephemeral Spasm", a 5-channel video.
Click on them to see large views and details.

"The Spasm Between the Infinities", video installation, Miami Beach, Dec. 2006

Above: Still frame from "The Spasm Between the Infinities"

Click here to see the "Spasm Between the Infinities" flash video.
To see a video overview of "The Spasm Between the Infinities" - CLICK HERE

Below are views of the 2007 exhibit at C. Emerson Fine Art


Statement about this Series

by Jeff Whipple

The three irregular lines grouped together is a symbol for life. I use the symbol to examine how an individual life or lifetime is valued and to acknowledge the legacy we all have been given by the countless lives of our ancestors. The three lines depict the basic perception of pattern: one element alone has no meaning, two could be coincidence but three is a pattern. The pattern of the most basic spasm of movement is what distinguishes the animate from the inanimate, the living from the dead.

I call the symbol a “Spasm”. Spasms are used in my artwork in many different ways. If the viewer understands them as a symbol for life they will arrive at their own interpretations about how the symbols interact with the imagery.

The figures with Spasms over their eyes may refer to how some people see the world through their life experiences or through the experiences of others. Or they are trying to see some meaning in life. In some of my images people are covered with Spasms. This could represent how our lives are affected by the people who lived before us. Or it could be about people who are burdened or blessed by other lives. Or the figures could represent whole societies or civilizations.

There are images of Spasms melting or burning like candles to represent how lives continually drip or melt away towards death. In some works hundreds of Spasms form a solid mass or fabric, which could represent groups of people, communities or human history.

The Spasm began in my artwork in 1982 as a painterly element. I used the 3 markings as a repetitive pattern that suggested it wasn’t random. At that time I began presenting realistic images within fields of colors and markings and I’ve continued with that same format ever since. I initially used the Spasms to define space in the fields of colors and create moods or visual rhythms. They were sort of like percussion in music and sometimes they were like stitching that wove the composition together. The Spasm began as a design motif to support the imagery and it has now moved to the forefront to become the imagery.