These figurative works play on the border of true physical representation and abstraction. At once painterly and sculptural, the figure emerges through layers of thick and luscious paint application. Meyer calls his paintings “raw and open” and describes how “each painting tells its own history through its layers, marks and revision.”
A very important part of Meyer’s artistic process is his faith in Judaism. For him, both painting and Judaism are about seeking truth through exploration. Meyer views his process as a quest to understand what it means to be a creator.
In thinking about creation, Meyer often considers the rhythm or heartbeat of the paint. When the pulse is interrupted, or gets faster or slower, he takes it as an indication that something important is about to happen; that the figure is about to emerge or hide or turn around. In this way, the paintings are about tapping into the reasons we make things and also how these creations exist once complete.
“I think any artist’s work is a reflection of how they see the world. I dive into it and make a mess—all my paints get mixed together – and then I try to create order. The bright colors turn to gray and then I try to distinguish between two grays. When differences become difficult to make, that’s when they are becoming interesting.”
Joshua Meyer received his BA from Yale University and also attended Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem. He lives and works in Cambridge, Mass. Meyer has received many awards including the esteemed Pollack Krasner Grant Foundation Award in 2008.