“Animals are to be respected, for different reasons. Not because they are “good” or useful for us (they are not all this way) but because a norm inside us, and acknowledged by all the religions and legislations, summons us not to cause pain, neither to us nor to any creature able to perceive it […] Laymen have few certainty but this is the main one: it’s acceptable to suffer or cause pain only to save oneself or someone else a deeper suffer. It’s a simple rule but its consequences are complex and everybody knows it. How to compare our own pain with the others’?”
“This series is based on photographs taken at various points in my life and arranged by location. Sections of the images have been obscured through a layer of embroidered pixels sewn directly into the photograph. The embroidery deteriorates sections of the original photograph forming a new pixelated layer of the original scene. The project refers to the failures of photography in preserving experience and personal history as well as the means by which photographs become nostalgic objects that obscure objective understandings of the past.”
“Modern societies attempt to understand and explain the mysteries of nature through various tangible human lenses such as science, technology, painting, literature, photography, etc. We also do so through more abstract methods such as “…intangible, metaphorical tools of the mind – contrast, remembrance, analogy…” And in both cases we “bring our own worlds to bear in foreign landscapes in order to clarify them for ourselves.” (Barry Lopez, Arctic Dreams). In other words, we convince ourselves that these anthropological devices lead to understanding. But try as we might, our interpretations, theories, reproductions, and commentaries of the natural world will never truly do it justice. Through our various strategies, we impose and accept “rules” of nature as factual knowledge (space and time, up and down, close and far, light and dark, solid vs. liquid/gaseous, etc). And through these arbitrary conceptual binaries, we deny its’ overwhelming mystery.
As an artist, I recognize that I’m guilty of this as well. I paint symbols and tropes that we comprehend as landscape; mountains, sunsets, etc. But I relish the mystery of the natural world, and I’m curious what happens when we view nature through a lens that breaks the rules of our understanding. In my work, rules of perspective, distance, and light are bent. Space can become a solid object and places are folded on top of one another. Millions of years are compacted into a single instant and rocks become fluid. I strive to present a moment that defies human intervention in the landscape, and pays homage to the potential in the inexplicable.”
“In all of the art forms that I pursue I strive for excellence. As proper diction is to a great speaker, so technical skill is to me as an artist. But, a great communicator does not repeat annunciation drills when he takes the stage rather, he conveys compelling messages and articulates profound thought. So it is with me and my art. I use the skill in my hand to express the thoughts of my mind and the yearnings of my heart. A good artist is one who has a voice of his own, but a great artist is one who is the voice of those around him.
Through my art I have the ability to identify those common passions, struggles and truths that we all share as humans. I can enlighten the soul through the eyes to the beauty it has grown jaded to. A work of art has that rare ability to be the perfect silent facilitator to conversation. In a world that is flying by, it stands still and constant for all time; preserving within it each thought it conveys. If my art is to be timeless then the truth expressed through it should be timeless as well.”
Jake Weidmann is one of eleven master penmen in the world.