Au Gallery : Gold Gallery

Jeff Cohen

Ancient History

I began my career as a working artist in February 2000. Before that time I only painted sporadically, never seriously attempting to really pursue a career as a fine artist. It's not that I didn't want to paint for a living, I just didn't know how to get started. When I was a little kid I assumed a career in art involved painting pictures and selling them, but it wasn't long before the term "starving artist" was introduced to me! I studied art in high school and college, learning about techniques, tools and materials, but I still had no idea how a person turns creativity into a reasonably marketable skill. Then I discovered the work of graphic arts. While I was in my early twenties I worked for several printing companies, learning past-up and typesetting. I also lean red darkroom techniques, and became rather masterful with a stat camera (if you don't know what this is, don't worry. They have pretty much been replaced by computers.) During this time I met my future wife, Leslie. She also had some background in graphic arts, and we decided to start a printing company together. What were we thinking? It was hard, it was smelly, and it was a real challenge for two young people without a lot of experience in the business world. But we learned a tremendous amount, and it led us to the next phase of our lives...

Computer Graphics

My experience in the printing business led me into the world of computer graphics. We used to have a big clunky typesetter which had a green CRT screen and accepted one line of text at a time. When I saw what a Macintosh and a laser printer could do, I was immediately hooked! Over the next few years we saw a lot of our colleagues go out of business. But we embraced the new technology, selling our presses and going digital. I quickly evolved from a printer to a graphic designer, working for many high level ad agencies and design firms in Atlanta. Soon I was in demand for my skills with Photoshop, Illustrator, and a variety of #D rendering programs. My wife and I formed our own graphic design company, and we were very successful. But for me, there was something missing. I am a creative person, and I feel a real need to express myself creatively. Sure, creativity is an important part of commercial illustration and graphic design, but clients have a tendency to suck the life out of an artist's concept. It wasn't enough for me. Then came the ice storm...

The Ice Storm of 2000

In the winter of 2000, Atlanta was hit by a major ice storm. Here in the South, we're not really equipped to deal with major winter weather. When it hits, we're not prepared. Schools close, cars crash into each other, anarchy ensues. And I'm not talking about major snow storms here, I mean an inch or two of snow! But the ice storm of 2000 was worse than that. We had freezing rain, then regular rain, then a hard freeze. The power lines became covered with ice, and the weight of the ice pulled the lines down all over the Atlanta area. Power crews were busy for over a week trying to restore order. Meanwhile, my family had a predicament. We couldn't use our computers! We went through our board games and played all the card games we could think of, and then we just sat around staring at each other. I finally decided it was a great time to get out the old paints and see what I could do. The flood gates opened! I haven't stopped painting since. Over the years I have sold my work through many galleries across the U.S. I now have over 1000 paintings in collections on five continents.

Artist's Statement

I am fascinated by the layers of chaos and order that I see everywhere. It's the relationship between the chaos of blizzard and the ordered structure of a snowflake. My paintings serves as a metaphor for this effect. The grid formed by the square times in my paintings provide a layer of order. This gives the painting a photographic effect as the mind composites the image from the individual squares. The tiles are each rendered independently of each other, adding a layer of chaos. Order returns within each painted tile, but breaks down into chaos again as I use a loose, lively stroke when rendering each square. I didn't come up with this theory and plan my art around it. Rather, as my technique has evolved my understanding of this relationship between chaos and order has evolved along with it--which goes back into the art.

Curriculum Vitae

b. Norwalk, CT, 1962

Selected Exhibitions

  • 2016

    Fragments, Gold Gallery, Boston, MA

  • 2012

    Gilded, Gold Gallery, Boston, MA

  • 2011

    The Still Life, Elliott Fouts Gallery, Sacramento, CA

    Houston Fine Art Fair, Houston, TX

    An Exhibition of New Paintings, Julie Nester Gallery, Park City, Utah

  • 2009

    Wynne/ Falconer Gallery, Chatham, MA

  • 2008

    Transitional Forms, Julie Nester Gallery, Park City, UT (solo)

    Trifecta, Twinhouse Gallery, Atlanta, GA

    Adler & Co. Gallery, San Francisco, CA

    Wynne/ Falconer Gallery, Chatham, MA

  • 2007

    New Works, Stricoff Fine Art, LTD, New York, NY

    Art Miami 2007

  • 2006

    Fragments, Twinhouse Gallery, Atlanta, GA

  • 2005

    Boundaries, Be Original! @ Miami Circle, Atlanta, GA

  • 2004

    Processed American Art Product, Wild Curry Gallery, Atlanta, GA

    Iridium Gallery, Roswell, GA

    Pinup Show, MOCA-GA, Atlanta, GA

  • 2002-2007

    eMOMA Electronic Museum of Modern Art

  • 2002-2003

    Spectrum Gallery, Wilmington, NC

  • 2002

    All Together Now, Heaven Blue Rose Gallery, Roswell, GA

    Meringue Oblation, Heaven Blue Rose Gallery, Roswell, GA (solo)

    Delta Technology Art Gallery

  • 2001

    A Decade of Heaven, Heaven Blue Rose Gallery, Roswell, GA

Professional/ Media

  • 15 Bytes, feature article, September 2008
  • West Branch, No. 61, Fall/Winter 2007, cover image
  • Atlanta Magazine's Home, Spring 2007
  • Empty Easel, April 2007
  • New American Paintings, No. 64, July 2006
  • Contour, No. 5, feature article, April 2006
  • Piedmont Review, feature article, June 2005
  • Museums & Galleries Atlanta, feature article, May/ June 2005
  • CNN.com The Art of the Internet
  • Juror 2003 EBSQ 21st Centruy Still Life competition
  • Piedmont Review, July 2001, review
  • Listed in Art in America, 2001 and 2002
  • Atlanta Journal-Constitution, July 2000, feature article

Collections

  • Senator John & Elizabeth Edwards
  • Karin Slaughter
  • King & Spalding, LLC, Atlanta, GA
  • Kenco, Inc., Chattanooga, TN
  • Printpack, Inc., Atlanta, GA
  • Numerous collections in the United States, Canada, Venezuela, Germany, Belgium, Taiwan, Great Britain, France, Switzerland, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Italy, and Australia.