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Jim Steere: Relics of Remembrance

Artist Statement

My work explores the passage of time and the illusive quality of memory, as experienced through a variety of materials. Relics of the past – discarded objects, many of which will become obsolete in the future.

These objects vary: bones, a child’s carriage wheels, wooden alphabet blocks, and quilt fragments are used in a series to create a visual theme.

White is used repeatedly in numerous pieces. In my pallet, white is not the absense of color. It is a color.

I was raised in New England where white is pervasive. White clapboard houses, white steepled churches, whitewashed fences and snow covered hills.

The transparency and the fragility of memory are evoked with whitewashed glazes and vintage tissue paper dress patterns, symbols of broken lines and arrows reconfigured in a language of lines, recalling the pentimento of ancient frescos.

Artist Bio

Jim Steere

Jim Steere

Jim Steere was born and raised in West Hartford, CT. As a boy, he demonstrated a facility for drawing and was enrolled by his mother in children’s art classes at the Wadsworth Atheneum.

He also produced puppet shows – as writer, designer and performer, gaining a reputation as the David Belasco of the backyard.

He attended the School of Visual Arts, the University of Hartford Art School (where he received a BFA), and the Art Students League. At the Yale School of Drama Steere studied stage design with Ming Chow Lee for one year.

Steere had a lengthy career as a theatrical scenic artist and set designer. He worked as a scenic artist in regional theaters: Santa Fe Opera, the Guthrie Theatre, on Broadway and on over fifty feature films – “The Wiz,” “Ragtime,” “The Cotton Club,” and the Academy Award-winning “Dances With Wolves.”

As a set designer, Steere worked in summer stock, regional theater, off Broadway, the Hartford Ballet, and Alvin Ailey’s American Dance Theater. He now devotes himself to art making full time.

He has exhibited his work at the Leslie Lohman Museum, The Queens Council on The Arts, the Hudson Guild and various other group shows.