J T G R A N T
walking the horizon
Fall Gallery Night
Saturday, September 8, 2018
12:00 to 9:00 pm
FORT WORTH, TEXAS, AUGUST 18, 2018
walking the horizon, an exhibition of new paintings by Fort Worth artist J.T. Grant, will be on display September 8 through October 13 at William Campbell Contemporary Art. An opening reception will be held on Fort Worth Art Dealers Association (FWADA) Fall Gallery Night, Saturday, September 8, from noon to 9:00 p.m. walking the horizonwill feature Grant's signature skyscapes and still lifes, which embody traditional oil techniques, opulent colors, and naturalistic depictions, even as their narratives impart a subtle sense of angst.
Grant's latest body of work is driven by the feelings of chaos he experiences as he struggles to navigate today's sociopolitical realm. This personal tumult materializes in his purposefully painted compositions as unbalanced objects, off-kilter perspectives, or cleverly imbued psychic friction. Such a subjective accounting of our chaotic world appears, however, in largely universal visual terms, as Grant passes these ugly, uncomfortable ideas through his filter of lush hues and dramatic yet placid light.
Similar to the Old Masters, whose robust, representational painting style he rivals, Grant employs nature as a metaphor for his ideas. Fruit stacked up and on the verge of toppling, or skies that portray a beautiful yet haunting light-Grant's objects and forms remain rife with potential energy, although the coming surge appears uncertain, and at times, dire. The artist has long looked to the Texas skies for inspiration, drawn to their aesthetic majesty as well as their ever-changing character. He considers the sky in general to perform as an effective vehicle for his visual thesis, recognizing it as an organic space, simultaneously permanent and in flux, and accessible to viewers on visual, intellectual, and emotional platforms.
Grant considers color as its own language of sorts, and in effect engages viewers through an array of rich pigments, strong contrasts, and more subtle tonal exchanges. "The psychology of the colors forms a complete and fully formed vocabulary," he says. Indeed, such a language employs a timeless, universal form of communication that audiences can appreciate for its masterful brushwork, light translations, or satiating story, while also emerging with something deeper. Grant explains, "I'm trying to use luscious, beautiful colors that hopefully, as I combine them in the right way, offer a fairly distinct, lower-consciousness narrative that the viewer may tap into unwillingly and unknowingly..."
Ultimately, Grant strives for an aesthetic quality that transcends the ages and maintains its message as well. He presents timely consequences wrapped in a timeless vision, using shape, form, and color to narrate and preserve his own feelings of discomfort with the world, in turn producing canvases that fuse traditional beauty with agitated allure.
As its title suggests, walking the horizon prompts viewers to consider that liminal space where solid ground and hazy firmament meet, where trusted quantities are upended and unrecognizable, despite pristine outward appearances.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
For more than two decades, acclaimed Fort Worth artist J.T. Grant has exhibited his work in solo and group exhibitions throughout Texas and across the United States. Noteworthy juried exhibitions include First Texas Annual and Art in the Metroplex, where prominent jurors Luis Jimenez and James Surls awarded him Best in Show for two consecutive years. He has been invited to jury the Annual Congressional Arts Competition and was also recognized as the featured artist in Fort Worth's 2003 Artists Against AIDS exhibition.
A scholar and teacher as well, Grant has lectured and taught classes at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TCU, and the Kimbell Art Museum, where he has given two presentations in the museum's prestigious Artist's Eye series. In 2011, he organized and directed an art competition for the Trinity River Vision Authority, and today continues to give lectures and demonstrate techniques to various painting groups.
Grant's work may be found in various public collections, including those of the Dallas Museum of Art, the Art Museum of South Texas in Corpus Christi, and the Fort Worth Public Library, among others. He has received commissions from the Omni Hotel, RadioShack, and Acme Brick in Fort Worth, and in 2008, he was commissioned to create the White House Christmas Ornament. Most recently, Grant was selected to paint a Fort Worth cityscape for the captain's boardroom of the littoral combat ship, USS Fort Worth-a commission arranged by U.S. Representative Kay Granger. Additionally, he has been featured in FW Weekly and in Great Artists of the Southwest, a coffee-table book published in 2014.
A native of Georgia, J.T. Grant received his BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University and his MFA from TCU.
ABOUT THE GALLERY
Founded in 1974 by William and Pam Campbell, William Campbell Contemporary Art exhibits high-quality contemporary art in a variety of media, including paintings, works on paper, mixed-media constructions, photography, prints, ceramics, and sculpture. By exhibiting nationally recognized artists, along with new and emerging talent, the gallery aims to nurture an awareness and appreciation of the exciting diversity found in contemporary art.