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Sat, Apr 08


Var Gallery 5th Street

Jill Sebastian: Early Work // Recent Work Opening Reception

Var Gallery is pleased to present "Early Work, Recent Work" by Jill Sebastian.

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Jill Sebastian: Early Work // Recent Work Opening Reception
Jill Sebastian: Early Work // Recent Work Opening Reception

Time & Location

Apr 08, 2023, 6:00 PM – Apr 09, 2023, 9:00 PM

Var Gallery 5th Street, 423 W Pierce St #1704, Milwaukee, WI 53204, USA

About the Event

Jill Sebastian’s work prods the disquiet of living. She asks, what are the comfortable lies we tell ourselves about how the world is structured? Through fragmentation, Sebastian creates metaphors that meld pressing social concerns with autobiographical experiences by pulling apart and reconstructing common objects and places as off-kilter.

In her first exhibition at Var, Early Work, Recent Work, the artist shares her reflections on how some themes and approaches reappeared throughout her 40-year career. She states, “ Over the years, my preoccupations have matured from the immediacy of exploring my individual psyche to seek a footing in the issues of my time.” Represented in this exhibition are works from several series focusing on relationships between nature and culture, material and language, through war, childhood suicide, and environmental crisis.

Jill Sebastian grew up in steel towns of the Midwest rust belt which has formed her as an artist. Her sculpture, drawings and installations have been exhibited in museums and galleries across the United States and internationally (New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Milwaukee, Tele Aviv, Amsterdam and more). Sebastian’s public art includes: a musical fence in New Orleans; an architecturally integrated literary project for the Milwaukee Convention Center (with Woodland Pattern Book Center); a streetscape (with Ken Saiki Design) for Madison, WI; and a mosaic for the Genome Center at UW-Madison. Her concerns with community participation and subliminal choreography underlying all her public work is expressed in the site-specific sculptural pocket park she developed among five baseball fields in Wick Park, Milwaukee. Sebastian has collaborated with Deb Loewen, Wild Space Dance Company to create a site-specific installation and hour-long multi media work, Art of the Ordinary, at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Other collaborators include composers Burt Levy and Josh Schmidt, writers John Koethe and Jon Erickson and filmmaker Jake Fuller. Among her awards are a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship 1985, City of Milwaukee Artist of the Year 1997 and Wisconsin Visual Art Lifetime Achievement Award 2016. Jill Sebastian is a Professor Emerita at Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design.

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