Your Guide to Art School Resources and Information

Sample Artist Statement

The following artist statement examples are provided as samples you can emulate. Don't copy them, but use them as inspiration to sculpt your own statement using ideas and words.


Jonathan H. Dough - Artist Statement
My artwork takes a critical view of social, political and cultural issues. In my work, I deconstruct the American dream, fairy tales, nursery rhymes, and lullabies that are part of our childhood and adult culture. Having engaged subjects as diverse as the civil rights movement, southern rock music and modernist architecture, my work reproduces familiar visual signs, arranging them into new conceptually layered pieces.

Often times these themes are combined into installations that feature mundane domestic objects painted blue, juxtaposed with whimsical objects, and often embellished with stenciled text. The color blue establishes a dream-like surreal quality, suggests notions of calmness and safety, and formally unifies the disparate objects in each installation. The texts provide clues to content and interpretation.

While I use a variety of materials and processes in each project my methodology is consistent. Although there may not always be material similarities between the different projects they are linked by recurring formal concerns and through the subject matter. The subject matter of each body of work determines the materials and the forms of the work.

Each project often consists of multiple works, often in a range of different media, grouped around specific themes and meanings. During research and production new areas of interest arise and lead to the next body of work.


Millie Wilson - Artist Statement
I think of my installations as unfinished inventories of fragments: objects, drawings, paintings, photographs, and other inventions. They are improvisational sites in which the constructed and the ready-made are used to question our
making of the world through language and knowledge. My arrangements are schematic, inviting the viewer to move into a space of speculation. I rely on our desires for beauty, poetics and seduction.

The work thus far has used the frame of the museum to propose a secret history of modernity, and in the process, point to stereotypes of difference, which are hidden in plain sight. I have found the histories of surrealism and minimalism to be useful in the rearranging of received ideas. The objects I make are placed in the canon of modernist art, in hopes of making visible what is overlooked in the historicizing of the artist. This project has always been grounded in pleasure and aesthetics.


Molly Gordon - Artist Statement
Knitting is my key to the secret garden, my way down the rabbit hole, my looking glass.

Hand knitting started it. From the beginning the process of transforming string into cloth has struck me as magical. And, over the years, that magical process has had its way with me, leading me from hobby to art. Knitting fills me with a sense of accomplishment and integrity, and has proven a most amenable vehicle for translating inner vision to outer reality.

I knit from the inside out. Though I work quite deliberately, consciously employing both traditional and innovative techniques, my unconscious is the undisputed project manager.

The concrete, repetitive nature of this work frees my imagination and provides many opportunities for happy accident and grace to influence the finished product.

Recently I discovered some childhood drawings: simple, crayoned patchworks that resonate deeply with my fiber work. Inspired and invigorated by a renewed sense of continuity, and awed by the mystery of how creation occurs, I am now knitting richly varied fabrics exploring many patterns, textures and colors. Once knit, the fabrics are pieced to form an always new patchwork from which I make my garments and accessories.

Molly Gordon


Martin Langford - Artist Statement
I don't set out to produce art about one subject or another. I'm never without a sketchbook to hand so I am constantly drawing and sometimes the drawings are left in the sketchbook and other times they develop into more in-depth ideas and detailed images.

I didn't set out to be an environmental artist or to create artwork relating to social commentary but as my portfolio developed and people started to review my work, the descriptions started to emerge and I began to notice a pattern I hadn't intended but am now please with.

My work tends to focus on the environment, the evolution of man and his material wealth, the development of bigger and bigger cities, more and more people, cars and industry on the planet and the consequences this has on nature. Some reviews have labeled my work as 'black humour' but I always try to depict a positive message too - the persistence of nature in recapturing what once belonged to the earth.

At school, the only class I really paid any attention in was art. I simply wasn't interested in anything else and I think my obsession with depicting the monotony of the work place and work force started there...

Some of my subject matter is about people's daily routines and a comment on human nature. And since I've always been a fan of mafia films - a new strand of work seems to have emerged depicting a very 'human' and 'school playground' side to mob life.

None of it was intentional - it all developed and evolved over time. People always ask for my artist statement so I needed to do one but I've never liked to explain a certain piece of work - if you've made a picture and that's how you wanted it to be - hopefully it can speak for itself and whatever it says to the viewer - it's the right message because there isn't a wrong and a right message. Each person takes something a little different from the same picture and I'm happy with that.

Influences
My influences are first and foremost everything I see, feel and experience, but I've always loved comic books particularly work by Harvey Pekar and Robert Crumb. I love architecture particularly Art Deco. The artists I most admire are John Martin, a mezzotint artist from the 1800's, Winsor McCay a cartoonist and animator who created Little Nemo, Escher and Lyonel Feininger creator of Kinder Kids. I grew up watching films such as Metropolis, Flash Gordon, Star Wars and Brazil.
Martin Langford


Academy of Art University