To me nature is a world of mathematical beauty; I literally see
the beauty of the numbers everywhere I look. When I see high tension
power lines I see the catenary. When I look at trees, mountains and
other scenery I see fractals. Math has always been integral to my
expression because living forms exhibit self-similarity, symmetry,
geometry and other mathematic constructs as well. Mathematics is one
way to understand creation. Manmade forms and constructs, including
my own are a pale imitation and yet I still must try to communicate
and abstract the wonder I behold.
I generally paint realistic things, but as time goes on I find
myself less drawn to the concrete and more intangible, looking for
the intrinsic value of the communication. I am developing an
appreciation for the qualities of non-representational concepts.
I believe art requires a certain lightness of spirit and thickness
of hide. Dark and disaffected surrounds us all; it is very easy to
be drawn into shadow and feel the need to convey the corresponding
emotions. I generally do not paint dark and disaffected except as a
necessary contrast to understand light. I want people to feel joy,
happiness, laughter, strength and other positive emotions when they
behold my art. I not only want them to look deeper, but feel
And as I write the preceding paragraph I recall a story my second grade teacher told me of the ant and the grasshopper. Before I heard her version, the story was a parable about the value of hard work and the ants were mighty cold to that grasshopper come winter.
Mrs. McGovern's version was rather different. In her version of the story the grasshopper enjoys the summer, singing and dancing the whole time the ants toil away. In the winter the grasshopper comes to the ants because he is hungry, cold and has not stockpiled these necessities. Of course the ants ask why they should feed him when they worked so hard all summer long, while he did not. The grasshopper begins to sing; he emotes the lazy days of summer; pretty soon the ants are drawn into his dream, recalling their own visions of the sun, the warmth, the hues, even as they huddle in their ant hole. And in the end, they let the grasshopper in and feed him as he recalls the colors of summer for them. In my mind that is my real job, recalling the colors of summer, even as the blanket of winter covers us all.
I have seen and taken a number of beautiful photographs, but for me
art is not about the way things are, it's more about the way they
should be. Art is a journey into the mind and the imagination; there
are no dragons, no talking animals, and no way to ride a beam of
light, but maybe there should be. To accomplish my aim of
communicating what should be, I paint outside and between the lines
to reveal what is not there.
I usually have a notion of how the painting is going to look by the
time the brush touches the canvas as the painted end-result is part
of a long process of thought, sketching and digital manipulation.
However, the canvas is where the painterly effects happen, the
fractal-like flow of water, paint and medium.
Once I get to the phase where the paint hits the canvas I am not a
patient person, therefore I love acrylic paints; they dry fast and I
can do multiple layers and create multiple effects in a short time.
The colors can be vibrant or muted. I can create watercolor like
effects allowing the luminosity of the canvas or paper to show
through or thick textured impastos. I can layer my paintings adding
dry brush and other effects to enhance my under-paintings to create
depth and detail. Although my projects are planned I do like the
paint to move and do its own thing. When I am painting I am in the
ultimate spatial zone - I am at home in the nonverbal world of
color, light, and space; it is my favorite place to be.
Currently I paint Birds and Binary, which is representative of my
whimsical observations of Social Media & Other forms of electronic
communication: Online Gaming, Music, Downloads, Conspiracy Webs, Pop
Culture etc. But I always have time for a dragon.-Jake
Jake Beckman's artist's statement: art as a
palliative to the toil and grind of everyday life, magical beauty of
numbers, abstraction as a form of communication. AKAJake, Phoenix,
AZ, fine artist and representational abstract acrylic painter of the
beautiful and the absurd: whimsy, pop, cactus flowers, landscapes,
seascapes, starscapes, folks and critters. Jake's work incorporates
mythology, archetypes, fantasy, mathematics and physics.