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University of Washington

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2012 Exhibitions:

Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell

North Galleries

October 27, 2012January 27, 2013


Image 1 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. Foo Dogs #3.

Image 2 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. Pickle Jar.

Image 3 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. The Tomb of Club Z (vitrine).

Image 4 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. The Tomb of Club Z.

Image 5 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. Pickle Jar (Monthra’s Egg).

Image 6 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. Bruno Poster.

Image 7 / 12: Jeffry Mitchell. Hand (Christ the Teacher).

Image 8 / 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view).

Image 9 / 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view).

Image 10 / 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view).

Image 11 / 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view).

Image 12 / 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view).

For the past 25 years, Jeffry Mitchell has approached his artistic exploration of the shared human experiences of love, death, sex, and spiritual trial and redemption with sincerity and intuitive intelligence. His art radiates with a charming appeal, marked by an exuberant abundance of forms, materials, and techniques. From his earliest experiments with resin and paper to his extended engagement with ceramics and his latest multi-part installations, Mitchell has consistently investigated the decorative and the theatrical and blurred distinctions between art, craft, and functionality.

Mitchell has developed a distinctive visual language full of symbolic characters like alphabet primers, flowers, elephants, bears, and other flora and fauna. What might first appear as child-like sweetness or nostalgic sentimentality quickly gives way to complex emotional content and deeper narratives that touch upon his identity as a creative artist and gay man as well as his working class Catholic background. Mitchell also responds to specific aspects of the history of art, craft, and visual culture. He fashions sophisticated twists on sources as diverse as Chinese funerary sculpture, folk art, Russian Constructivism, watercolor nature illustrations, and modernist assemblage.

On this occasion, the Henry published in cooperation with Marquand Books the first monograph of the artist’s work. This fully illustrated volume includes essays by exhibition curator Sara Krajewski, Matthew Stadler, Patterson Sims, and Sam Korman; a conversation between Mitchell and artist Matthew Offenbacher; and anecdotes from Eric Fredericksen, Tina Hoggatt, Kristan Kennedy, Jeanne Quinn, Hanneline Rogeberg, and Tommy White. The publication is $45/$37.25 with Member’s discount and is available for purchase at the Henry’s front desk. Online ordering is also available through our Publications page.

Organized for the Henry by exhibition curator Sara Krajewski. Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell is generously supported by The Barton Family Foundation in memory of Irving Marcus; Cathy and Michael Casteel; Jane Hedreen and David Thyer; Lady Foundation; Christina and James Lockwood; Judith M. Tobin and Michael H. Baker; William and Ruth True; the Bagley and Virginia Wright Foundation; ArtsFund, The Boeing Company; and the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.
Featured artists: Jeffry Mitchell
Image 1: Jeffry Mitchell. Foo Dogs #3. 2005. Earthenware with metallic glaze. Private collection. Image courtesy of James Harris Gallery, Seattle. Photo: Richard Nicol.
Image 2: Jeffry Mitchell. Pickle Jar. 2005. Earthenware with metallic glaze. Miller Meigs Collection. Image courtesy of James Harris Gallery, Seattle. Photo: Richard Nicol.
Image 3: Jeffry Mitchell. The Tomb of Club Z (vitrine). 2006. Low-fire glazed earthenware, wood, glass, and metal. Courtesy Western Bridge, Seattle. Collection of William and Ruth True. Photo: Mark Woods Photography.
Image 4: Jeffry Mitchell. The Tomb of Club Z. 2006. Hand-made paper, silkscreen on paper, wood, and cloth. Courtesy Western Bridge, Seattle. Collection of William and Ruth True. Photo: Mark Woods Photography.
Image 5: Jeffry Mitchell. Pickle Jar (Monthra’s Egg). 2011. Glazed earthenware. Courtesy the artist and AMBACH & RICE, Los Angeles. Photo: Eric Fisher.
Image 6: Jeffry Mitchell. Bruno Poster. 1992. Lithograph with watercolor on paper. Private collection. Photo: Richard Nicol.
Image 7: Jeffry Mitchell. Hand (Christ the Teacher). 2009. Lead-glazed earthenware. Collection of Charles and Amanda Kitchings.
Image 8: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view). 2012 - 2013. Henry Art Gallery. Photo credit: R.J. Sanchez
Image 9: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view). 2012 - 2013. Henry Art Gallery. Photo credit: R.J. Sanchez
Image 10: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view). 2012 - 2013. Henry Art Gallery. Photo credit: R.J. Sanchez
Image 11: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view). 2012 - 2013. Henry Art Gallery. Photo credit: R.J. Sanchez
Image 12: Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. (installation view). 2012 - 2013. Henry Art Gallery. Photo credit: R.J. Sanchez
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