JONAS WOOD (B. 1977)
JONAS WOOD (B. 1977)
JONAS WOOD (B. 1977)
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PROPERTY FROM AN AMERICAN PRIVATE COLLECTION
JONAS WOOD (B. 1977)

Yellow Still Life with Grating

Details
JONAS WOOD (B. 1977)
Yellow Still Life with Grating
signed, titled, and dated ‘YELLOW STILL LIFE WITH GRATING GRATING JBPW 2016’ (on the reverse)
oil and acrylic on canvas
152.4 x 172.7 cm. (60 x 68 in.)
Painted in 2016
Provenance
Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner

Brought to you by

Jacky Ho (何善衡)
Jacky Ho (何善衡) Head of Evening Sale

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Lot Essay

Rising to international acclaim over the past decade, Jonas Wood is a master of executing bold and colorful compositions on a monumental scale. Yellow Still Life with Grating is a prime example of Wood’s interest in the legacy of the still life, while exploring the imagery of his daily life, the result is a bold new arrangement that is unparalleled in contemporary painting.

Yellow Still Life with Grating is a carefully and intentionally constructed image. In order to arrive at his final composition, Wood builds up the painterly layers like an architect (his father designed buildings), often beginning with a photograph of compositional forms that capture his attention and then creating a collage from multiple photographs, before producing a drawing of this new configuration. Next he paints in the background, before focusing his attention on the foreground elements in exacting detail, making final adjustments as he does so.

Writing in The New York Times, critic Roberta Smith notes, “More than ever his works negotiate an uneasy truce among the abstract, the representational, the photographic and the just plain weird. They achieve this with a dour yet lavish palette, tactile but implacably workmanlike surfaces and a subtly perturbed sense of space in which seemingly flattened planes and shapes undergo shifts in tone and angle that continually declare their constructed, considered, carefully wrought artifice”. With an eye for composition that combines bold silhouettes with irresistible detail, Wood produces paintings packed with layers of visual interest.

As well as formal concerns, he also adds nods to art history. “My grandfather collected a lot of art in a short period, for not even twenty years in the 1960s and ‘70s”, Wood explained, “…my grandparents’ and parents’ homes were very aesthetic places, packed with images and objects. It all seeped into me”. The artist is equally inspired by still-life arrangements in his home. “Wood’s similar focus on botanicals and precious collectibles, whether represented in the genre of still life or as elements in architecturally distinctive personal spaces, speak both to his deep interest in the history of modernist painting, and to the richness they represent as symbols of a specific, bold and experimental modernity” writes Ian Alteveer, curator at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The nuanced combinations of patterns, shapes, colors, and subjects have become Wood’s own personal iconography, but he is always looking to improve his ability to maintain balance and visual intrigue in his work. Yellow Still Life with Grating alludes to pronkstilleven, or ostentatious still life in Dutch, a popular genre in 16th and 17th century Netherland that depicts a diversity of objects, fruits and flowers. Adapting the tradition to contemporary visual language, Yellow Still Life with Grating reflects the earthly pleasure of a modern being and induces a deeper meditation on the true meaning of life.

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