Jeffrey Gibson’s paintings and sculptures deftly combine geometric abstraction and Minimalism with the traditional materials and motifs of his Native American heritage.
Jeffrey Gibson’s paintings and sculptures deftly combine geometric abstract painting with the traditional craft materials of his Native American heritage. His recent paintings are composed on stretched animal hides, a luminous surface for paint. Gibson’s provocative use of hide and abstraction relates both to indigenous culture and challenges the trajectory of modern art. Mixed media sculptures combine traditional craft with Op Art painting: drum heads—linked and suspended as a column—are painted with geometric patterns; a recycled army blanket is painted with related motifs and strung to a flag pole. Gibson has located in his work a compelling paradigm: that the categories between abstract painting histories and Native American visual histories and materials are not so very far apart, and that Gibson’s own heritage and training might productively bridge the two.