Diane Rosenstein Gallery is pleased to present Hot Town, an exhibition of paintings and ceramics by Jesse Edwards. The work was created in Edwards’ studios on the Lower East Side of Manhattan (2010 – 2018) and he offers this show as a souvenir of his “New York years”. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery.
Edwards historicizes American counterculture by representing its symbols and iconic imagery in formal art historical genres such as still lifes, landscapes, and portraits. He paints with oils on linen; he is, in essence, a “realist” painter who captures the overt milieu of decadent tension that infiltrated his daily life in The Bowery and Chinatown. His compositions investigate light, perspective, draping, and pose.
The artist’s subjects are uncompromisingly contemporary: everyday objects either pulled from his laptop or painted from life; models sourced through Craigslist or clothing and paraphernalia arranged on a folding table in his studio. In this exhibition, he presents Vanitas paintings, Card Houses, Flags, and Deli Flowers. He will also show new “Palette” paintings - abstract works that frequently take him months to complete, his “contribution to the abstract canon of New York City.”
Taken together these paintings blur the boundaries between traditional and contemporary forms of painting and representation, which is the core of Edwards’ practice. It immediately evokes a sense of nostalgia and one that he continues to layer with his selection of imagery that is populist, vintage, and whimsical.