A Rush And A Push
Jeffrey Cortland Jones
at Christopher West Presents

by Scott Grow , originally published at On The Cusp

Auestere and subtle beauty. Walking into the gallery space you may find you are not confronted immediately with vibrant, bold works but wait… give them time. The works of Jeffrey Cortland Jones are at first glance nothing more than small pairings of minimal white paintings on acrylic but this, for the keen and paitent viewer, will soon enough see these works unfold to reveal the layers of his process and pallette. In many ways these paintings have a certain lineage with artists such as Mark Rothko and Robert Ryman though they are anything but stagnant rehashes of their work. Jones has managed to find his own way in these paintings to navigate the very fine line of being both “painterly” and “reductive”. Minimal would more than likely be one of the first words out of someones mouth when attemping to describe them to another but they are so much more.

This exhibition is a first for Jones in presenting his paintings as diptychs. This pairing off of one paintings with another instantly creates a diaolog between the two paintings that we have not seen in previous shows but allows for the viewer to begin drawing their own comparrisons and contrasts between them. This very act helps expand the viewers attempts to look more deeply into the paintings, seeing the subtle shifts and passages upon its surface. Whether that is the pale greenish grey paint that peeks through a translucent layer of off white, the glow of orange reflected upon the wall from behind the painting (creating a light halo of color), or the more notable multi hued drips that become prevelant within a number of the larger paintings. All of these elements come together to create some dynamic paintings.

I have long been a fan of the artist and have enjoyed watching how his work has continued to evolve over the course of the past few years. Seeing this show in such a modestly sized space as Christopher West Presents, could have been considered a hinderance in the face of some artists but West and Jones together have managed to make a striking and impactful exhibition. So we soon learn that it is not the size of the works or the space that make the show but how well it is presented. And this is certainly one of the best looking painting shows I have seen in Indy in quite awhile. The show closes this weekend so be sure to check out in person as it is the best way to see these paintings. Trust me, they are very hard to photograph. So go and see them yourself.