Justin Bower in front of his work Moment of Collision

Justin Bower/ Justin Bower

United States 1975

Fine Art

www.justinbower.com

Justin Bower
Justin Bower
Male
United States
1975

Justin Bower is an American artist who paints his subjects as de-stabilized, fractured post-humans in a nexus of interlocking spatial systems. His paintings investigate how we define ourselves in this digital and virtual age while suggesting the impossibility of grasping such a slippery notion.

Bower’s work milestones

He was born in San Francisco. Bower earned a degree in Art and Philosophy from the University of Arizona in 1998 and a Master of Fine Arts from Claremont Graduate University in 2010. Since graduating from CGU, Bower’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at Ace Gallery Beverly Hills (2010) and Unix Gallery in New York City (2013). The artist has won and been nominated for several grants and awards, among them The Feitelson Fellowship Grant (2010) and The Joan Mitchell award (2010).
Bower uses paint as an instrument of dissection and inquiry. Flesh acts as a complex veneer, functioning as a biological boundary from externalized technologies; all the while the viewer realizes that the same externalized technologies are always already inside the subject. This ultimately creates an open system, an incomplete subject becoming and degrading, not knowing where the outside starts and the internal ends. The boundaries of the traditional subject are now leaking in Bower’s concept. With mobile devices semi-permamnently affixed to our hands, constantly in a dialogue of information with the world, how much of our autonomy and freedom will we give up as technology continues to permeate our daily existence? This is a question that perturbs Bower.

Justin Bower, technology and a subject

Much like Francis Bacon and Da Vinci of generations past, Bower uses paint as an instrument of dissection and inquiry. Flesh acts as a complex veneer, functioning as a biological boundary from externalized technologies; all the while the viewer realizes that the same externalized technologies are always already inside the subject. This ultimately creates an open system, an incomplete subject becoming and degrading, not knowing where the outside starts and the internal ends. The boundaries of the traditional subject are now leaking in Bower’s concept.

Techno slumber and Op Art concept

His paintings reflect the increasing “control society” that we find ourselves in. By placing his turbulent subjects in an Op Art context, the familiar repeating patterns that were used to engage the eye in the 60’s, are now being deployed to act as a type of “code” permeating and invading the body/subject. Bower wants to “have the viewer feel the instability his subjects reflect”, by playing on the non-fixed features of the face and the hallucinatory effects of the Op Art, so as to engage the viewer and perhaps awaken them from a techno-slumber.
Justin Bower lives in Los Angeles.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/ CityGroup/Solo
2013 Panic RoomNew York, Unix GallerySolo
2013True BelieversTorrance, California, Torrance Art MuseumGroup
2012Untitled Group ShowLos Angeles, Ace GalleryGroup
2011Tel-Art-PhoneLos Angeles, Beacon Arts BuildingGroup
2010EmbeddedLos Angeles, Ace GallerySolo
2010The Reflected GazeTorrance, California, Torrance Art MuseumGroup
2010Cherry Pie Los Angeles, Western ProjectsGroup
2009DestabilizerClaremont, MFA exhibition, Peggy Phelps GallerySolo
200912 Gauge, New PaintingsTorrance, California, Torrance Art MuseumGroup
2008Graduate WorkPomona, DA GallerySolo
2008Heidegger's Huts: Architectures of Thought and SpaceSass-Fee, Switzerland, Egs Project RoomGroup