Pete Jacobs lives and works in Chicago. Born and raised in New Haven, CT, he attended Wesleyan University, graduating with a B.A. in English Literature. A published poet, he has received, among other awards, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. In recent years, his drive to experiment and innovate has steered his interests towards the visual arts.
In his photo-based work, he often portrays a vulnerable humanism. His multi-panel Tableaux series transforms the worldly—a tightrope walker, a laughing woman, a collection of prosthetic eyes, a text statement on unrequited love—into strange and illuminating meldings of expressionistic color fields with ghostly underlying imagery.
In these visual narratives, the viewer experiences both a sense of fracturing into parts and a coming together as a whole. As with chapters in an unfolding story, the eye lingers on the contents of one panel and then is drawn on to the next in a progression of hue gradients and the linking up of the image. A tension hovers in this attempt at unity never fully realized due to the spatial separation of the individual panels
In his painted work, gradients also play a central role as they develop across curving bands of space. His Supervillains series of hard-edge paintings feature flowing gradients of saturated acrylic hues squaring off with glittering metallics. His Wave series paintings are minimal meditations on painting itself, a visual transformation born of two pigments gradually combining across an undulating matrix.
1962 New Haven, CT
1985 Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, BA
1999 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship
1996 First Prize, River Styx International Poetry Award
1995 AWP Intro Journals Award
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2018 Art Miami, Miami, FL
2018 Expo Chicago, Chicago, IL
2018 Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago, IL
2018 Studio Oh!, Chicago, IL