Jill Ricci ~ Artist Statement
One of the most arresting visuals for me is an old wall layered with papers, graffiti and text – our modern hieroglyphics. I try to re-create this beauty in my work, the layers of time and decay are what interest me. I hope that the person viewing my work will linger, trying to discover hidden imagery and text and depending on their life experience, find their own meaning or interpretation.
Found images and objects function as signifiers of both individual and collective experience. By incorporating materials that are linked to the realities of daily life, I strive to establish an immediate identification between the viewer and the work of art. I am exploring the place between “high art” and popular culture, text and image, figuration and abstraction, past and present , and two and three-dimensional space.
I begin working without a final vision in mind: I use collected materials and allow pattern, texture, color and structure to emerge organically. In this new body of work, I want the pieces to evoke the walls of Morocco, a Renaissance Church, a NYC subway wall and of a hint Malibu Barbie all simultaneously existing on one canvas.
“In our modern and sleek world, we find fascination in old things and places. These are objects with a story, subway walls wallpapered with layer upon layer upon layer of poster ads or the stratum of paints on a bedroom wall, showing us the history of its owners. By combining elements of advertising ephemera, fabric, wallcoverings and abstraction, Ricci’s work manages to feel at once ancient and modern. With contemporary graphics layered under the patina of paint, these pieces almost feel like we are peeling back the scales from the antiquated to find that what is hidden beneath is not obsolete, but avant-garde.
The artist’s layering collected materials mirrors society’s ever abiding search for the next big thing. We are constantly looking for the latest gadget, fashion or whatchmacallit that will give us joy. But perhaps, joy doesn’t come from the newest thing, but looking back with fondness and learning from what has come before.” ~ Lesley Frenz, Art Critic
Born: 1967, Providence, RI
Education: Smith College BA, Art Institute of Chicago
Current: Co-owner/ Director Parlor Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ